Starring Denzel Washington and Russell Crowe
Directed by Ridley Scott (Gladiator)
Rated R for violence, pervasive drug content and language, nudity and sexuality
Appropriate for ages 17+
Release Date: February 19, 2008 on DVD and HD-DVD
I firmly believe that had this great American crime drama been released in theaters in December, we would have seen this film nominated for tons of Oscars this year. Just because the buzz burned out too early, though, don’t skip this powerful drama based on the true story of Frank Lucas, the infamous gangster that was responsible for destroying Harlem with his steady supply of pure heroine. Imagine Scarface meets The French Connection and you have American Gangster, a nail-biting thriller that belongs more in the 70’s than in today. The DVD contains an Unrated Extended Cut while the HD-DVD version contains both the original in HD and the new cut on the flip-side in standard format. The alternate beginning is a little over-hyped due to the fact that they just moved the post-credits sequence to the front, and the deleted scenes aren’t all that memorable, but there is a very informative commentary by director Ridley Scott and writer Steven Zaillian.