Thursday Movie Picks: Crime Family

This week’s topic could be a list of classics but I’m really lousy with watching and liking old movies.  And I know that I probably have seen many crime family movies from the late 80’s as well as 90’s, but most of them are a blur. And I guess I’m trying to find an excuse for this list not including the obvious choices one might mention under this theme. That being said, I think I make it up by at least recommending the most obvious one.

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# 198 – Leonardo DiCaprio (actor special)

I have now decided to pay much more time on categories that are rather lonely and since Actor/Actress category should be (by now) among the biggest categories in my blog I’m taking it very seriously from now on. The first actor special post was dedicated to Heath Ledger because he is and always will be my favorite. The second, as you already saw, is Leonardo DiCaprio because it seems that he can’t do wrong in my book as well.

DiCaprio started out from an early age being in TV-series and movies throughout his teenage years opposite to some of Hollywood’s greatest names like Robert De Niro and Meryl Streep. Then came James Cameron’s Titanic and after that, well you know what happened – DiCaprio hit the jackpot. It seems that this charming and hardworking Hollywood leading drama actors picks his roles very carefully and then acts them with precision and utmost respect because all of his movies are well-respected. (Not gonna do summaries of all the movies, although I’ve seen most of them.)

This Boy’s Life (1993)

What’s Eating Gilbert Grape (1993)

Romeo + Juliet (1996)

This is the contemporary version of the most famous and ever-lasting love story between Romeo and Juliet – I say contemporary because I feel like it is the best word to describe this movie. I just remember its collision between the urban world and the fact that the dialog was kept like it was originally – did it felt weird? Yes it did, I don’t remember feeling comfortable with this movie at all but maybe it was my young age and naive thought that every romantic movie should be easy to follow.

Titanic (1997)

I still remember that this was literally the first time I went to the cinema to watch a movie (I think that 101 Dalmatians doesn’t count – it is a cartoon) and while I was quite young I cried like I knew something about love and stuff. Well, Titanic does that to you, you cry because Rose doesn’t let Jack onto the door (or what ever) that is big enough for two of them (kind of) and he then drowns – you cry because you feel like it’s unfair that the hot guy has to die and the woman survives. Or you might cry because other people died as well.

The Man in the Iron Mask (1998)

The Beach (2000)

Gangs of New York (2002)

Catch Me If You Can (2002)

This is one of my favorite DiCaprio movies because it isn’t too serious (which he is especially good at) but it has a slight humor to it. Together with Tom Hanks they portray a true story about Frank (DiCaprio) who by the time he is 19 becomes a millionaire – and not by doing honest work. DiCaprio is a young man who is a pilot, a doctor and a lawyer and the whole movie evolves and progresses through out his lies while Carl (Hanks) is trying to catch him. Watched it at least three times and would be happy to watch it again – brilliant.

The Aviator (2004)

The Departed (2006)

These are the type of movies that I think are just exactly what DiCaprio is good at – serious, thrilling and utmost interesting to watch. The chemistry between DiCaprio and Matt Damon in this one is, as far as I remember, amazing to watch and you can’t do wrong when you are Martin Scorsese. It won an Oscar for the best movie of the year in 2007 and a nomination for DiCaprio and also Mark Whalberg. The cast is great, the story is captivating and the directing is something to inspire towards to.

Blood Diamond (2006)

Body of Lies (2008)

Revolutionary Road (2008)

Shutter Island (2010)

By now I think I’m writing summaries of those DiCaprio movies I’ve seen more than once and therefor Shutter Island is next. Another great collaboration between Scorsese and DiCaprio while the shaking line between reality and madness is played to its greater limit. DiCaprio is now a detective who investigates a mysterious escape out of a mental institution. Together with Mark Ruffalo as his partner they enter a visually stunning atmosphere (it’s the 50’s) – timeless and interesting to watch over and over again.

Inception (2010)

Don’t lie, you knew it was coming and why not? DiCaprio does leave his comfort-zone a bit, doing an action packed sci-fi movie but still gets a chance to add all that drama and bitterness he has brought to us for many years. I think that having the drama in it was the reason DiCaprio finally agreed to work with Christopher Nolan and along with Joesph Gordon-Levitt, Ellen Page, Marion Cotillard,Tom Hardy and Cillian Murphy this science fiction movie is much more than just the effects (also because Nolan does very little CGI).

Coming up:

J. Edgar (2011) – In October you get to see DiCaprio portray a FBI director. Directed by Clint Eastwood.

The Great Gatsby (2012)

Django Unchained (2012) – All I can say is that Quentin Tarantino is coming back with DiCaprio, Jackson, Foxx, Waltz and many others.

Short facts: (from IMDb)

Date of Birth

11 November 1974, Hollywood, California, USA

Birth Name

Leonardo Wilhelm DiCaprio

Nickname

Leo
Lenny D

Height

6′ (1.83 m)

Mini bio: (from Wikipedia)

DiCaprio, an only child, was born in Los Angeles, California. His German-born mother, Irmelin (née Indenbirken), is a former legal secretary, and his father, George DiCaprio, is an underground comic artist and producer/distributor of comic books.[7] DiCaprio’s mother moved from Oer-Erkenschwick at the Ruhr, Germany, to the U.S. during the 1950s,[8] while DiCaprio’s father is a fourth-generation American of half south-Italian (from the Naples region) and half German descent (from Bavaria in southern Germany). DiCaprio’s career began with his appearance in several commercials and educational films. After being booted off the set of children’s television series Romper Room for being disruptive at the age of five,[16] DiCaprio followed his older stepbrother Adam Farrar into television commercials, landing an ad for Matchbox cars at 14.[16] In 1990, he got his break on television when he was cast in the short-lived series based on the movie Parenthood. After Parenthood, DiCaprio had bit parts on several shows, including The New Lassie and Roseanne, as well as a brief stint on the soap opera Santa Barbara, playing the young Mason Capwell. His involvement in Parenthood and the daily soap earned him a nomination for the Young Artist Award for Best Young Actor each.

A committed environmentalist, DiCaprio has received praise from environmental groups for his activism.[4] In the past, he has opted to fly on commercial flights instead of chartering private jets, and it was reported that he drives a hybrid car and has solar panels installed on his house.[4] In an interview with Ukula about his 2007 film 11th Hour, DiCaprio cited global warming as “the number-one environmental challenge.”[84]