Black Mass

Metascore
73

Generally favorable reviews - based on 9 Critics What's this?

until movie release
  • Starring: , , ,
  • Summary: In 1970s South Boston, FBI Agent John Connolly (Joel Edgerton) persuades Irish mobster James “Whitey” Bulger (Johnny Depp) to collaborate with the FBI and eliminate a common enemy: the Italian mob. The drama tells the true story of this unholy alliance, which spiraled out of control,In 1970s South Boston, FBI Agent John Connolly (Joel Edgerton) persuades Irish mobster James “Whitey” Bulger (Johnny Depp) to collaborate with the FBI and eliminate a common enemy: the Italian mob. The drama tells the true story of this unholy alliance, which spiraled out of control, allowing Whitey to evade law enforcement, consolidate power, and become one of the most ruthless and powerful gangsters in Boston history. Expand
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 6 out of 9
  2. Negative: 0 out of 9
  1. Reviewed by: Scott Foundas
    Sep 4, 2015
    90
    If Johnny Depp’s mesmerizing performance — a bracing return to form for the star after a series of critical and commercial misfires — is the chief selling point of “Black Mass,” there is much else to recommend this sober, sprawling, deeply engrossing evocation of Bulger’s South Boston fiefdom and his complex relationship with the FBI agent John Connolly, played with equally impressive skill by Joel Edgerton.
  2. Reviewed by: Alonso Duralde
    Sep 4, 2015
    88
    This is Depp’s show all the way, featuring his best dramatic performance since another organized-crime movie, 1997’s “Donnie Brasco.”
  3. Reviewed by: Lee Marshall
    Sep 4, 2015
    80
    Johnny Depp’s broodingly psychotic turn as convicted Boston crime lord James ‘Whitey’ Bulger is not the only tasty thing about Scott Cooper’s tale of the unholy alliance between a South Boston Irish mobster and the FBI.
  4. Reviewed by: Todd McCarthy
    Sep 4, 2015
    70
    Depp's instinct for observing, underlaying and keeping things in, then letting it all out when required, pays big dividends here in a performance far more convincing than his previous big gangster role, John Dillinger in Michael Mann's Public Enemies; it's unexpected, very welcome at this point in his career, and one of his best.
  5. Reviewed by: Jessica Kiang
    Sep 4, 2015
    67
    There is nothing underneath the glossy surface and no real insight into what made this man tick — and despite how creepy he looks here, Bulger was a man, not a devil.
  6. Reviewed by: Dave Calhoun
    Sep 4, 2015
    60
    It’s Bulger whose grim appearance and even grimmer behaviour ‘Black Mass’ indulges. But it’s the quieter, more complicated Connolly who offers the film’s subtler pleasures.
  7. Reviewed by: John Bleasdale
    Sep 4, 2015
    60
    Black Mass is ultimately a decent film with some great parts, but unfortunately it falls short of the canon to which it aspires.

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