Angel Heart(1987) - Alan Parker

Angel Heart is a Neo-Noir Horror film about a private detective hired by a very creepy Robert De Niro to find a missing singer. The trail leads him to New Orleans and all the spookiness and voodoo that town has to offer. Angel Heart weirdly reminds me of Blade Runner with both films just dripping with style and atmosphere. Angel Heart doesn’t work quite as often as Blade Runner, but at its peaks it is mesmerizing. The AMAZING score from Trevor Jones and a soundtrack full of moody jazz create a consistent sound bed of doom and gloom. Micky Rourke is perfectly cast as an anti-hero who seems nice enough but is casually cruel to almost everyone he meets. In one of his first scenes, he leverages a doctor’s opium addiction for the purpose of interrogation. Robert De Niro is credited as “special appearance by” and it sure is special. This is 1987 De Niro approaching the tail end of giving a shit and in a rare supporting performance. He’s not in the film very much, but he shows up to eat a hard-boiled egg in one scene that is simultaneously hilarious and terrifying. The cinematography by Michael Seresin is full of high-contrast compositions and thick shadows. Angel Heart might be too stylized or even melodramatic for some people, but there is really something here for genre fans looking for something dark and unique.

Bryan E. West
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