Donnie Brasco

Director: Mike Newell
Writer: Paul Attanasio
Director of Photography:Peter Sova
Editor:Jon Gregory
Music:Patrick Doyle
Production Designer:Donald Graham Burt
Producers:Mark Johnson, Barry Levinson, Louis DiGiaimo and Gail Mutrux
TriStar; R; 121 minutes
Cast:Al Pacino, Johnny Depp, Michael Madsen, Bruno Kirby, James Russo and Anne Heche
Based on the book by Joseph D. Pistone with Richard Woodley

Donnie Brasco takes the mob movie to another level by shifting its gaze from the romantic realm of well-dressed hoods to the workaday world of the blue-collar thug. The good fellas are not so good here, and loyalty and a job well done does not promise a promotion. Depp, who has in the past opted for offbeat roles, makes a star turn here with understated grace. For three years, FBI agent Joe Pistone (Depp) poses undercover as a young hood, Donnie Brasco, to infiltrate the New York mob. Depp's convincing performance in the title role is matched by Pacino's Lefty, the third-rate, luckless wiseguy. Through his mobster mentor Lefty, Donnie penetrates the Mafia underworld but struggles to keep a life going with his wife Maggie (Heche) and kids. As Brasco and Lefty develop a father-son relationship, Brasco has to face the consequences: His work will land his best friend behind bars or six feet under.

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