|Peter Tolan, Harold Ramis and Kenneth Lonergan
|Warner Bros.; R; 110 minutes
|Robert De Niro, Billy Crystal, Lisa Kudrow and Joe Viterelli
Robert De Niro is the incumbent mob-boss stricken by feelings of inadequacy and sudden panic; Billy Crystal is his reluctant psychoanalyst (available 'round the clock, of course), and together they make a fresh new comedy. De Niro's history of gangland depictions is recontextualized rather than parodied, bringing a warmly emotional edge to organized crime. “Maybe I was gonna whack ya,” confesses Vitti (De Niro) to Sobol (Crystal), “but I felt real conflicted about it.” Their lively relationship uses each actor's considerable talent to good effect — Crystal is humorous for the first time in a long time. Lisa Kudrow gets clipped in an auxiliary role as his romantic interest, although a pack of mafiosos on De Niro's side add some spice. A movie to be enjoyed (not analyzed).