The Irishman beats Taxi Driver to become Scorsese's best reviewed film of all time

New gangster film has a perfect score on Rotten Tomatoes after 80 reviews

Jacob Stolworthy
Thursday 17 October 2019 11:53
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The Irishman - Netflix Official Teaser

The Irishman is Martin Scorsese’s best reviewed film since Taxi Driver.

Robert De Niro, Al Pacino and Joe Pesci head up the new gangster film following real-life Mafia hitman Frank Sheeran across several decades of his life and his experiences with labour union teamster Jimmy Hoffa (Pacino) and crime boss Russell Bufalino (Pesci).

Production began on the filmmaker’s long-gestating mob drama in 2016 with lucrative rights picked up at Cannes Film Festival. Netflix later acquired worldwide rights to the film for a reported $105m setting a budget of $125m.

Due to the de-ageing technology required to make the central characters look younger, the film ended up costing $160m.

Scorsese’s efforts have paid off, though. The film has a 100 per cent score on Rotten Tomatoes after an impressive 80 reviews meaning that not one single judgement of the film has been negative.

The filmmaker’s other high-ranking films on the review aggregate site are 1976’s Taxi Driver‘s score with 98 per cent, Hugo (93 per cent), Bob Dylan documentary Rolling Thunder Revue (92 per cent) and The Departed (91 per cent). His previous film, 2018’s Silence, has a score of 83 per cent.

Raging Bull and Goodfellas, released in 1980 and 1990 respectively, each have 96 per cent.

Based on Charles Brandt’s book I Heard You Paint Houses, The Irishman marks the ninth collaboration between De Niro and Scorsese. It’s the first time Pacino has worked with the director.

The Irishman will be released in selected UK cinemas on 8 November, before arriving on Netflix from 27 November.

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