October 26, 1991 -- On the other end of the film spectrum is ``Cape Fear,'' the latest effort by master director Martin Scorsese. The film is less ambitious than some of his recent films in that it is a formula thriller. The film rises above the standard plot because of the vast talent of the people involved.
The story centers around a psychopathic ex-convict played by Robert DiNiro, who was betrayed by his lawyer (Nick Nolte). DiNiro returns from prison to take revenge on Nolte and his family and in the process sets out to prove he is superior to them.
As usual DiNiro is superb in a performance where he at one moment is charming, the next a raging killer. Nolte is also up to the task as the guilty lawyer and later, outraged victim. Jessica Lange plays the lawyer's wife and Juliette Lewis plays the couple's lawyer, who finds herself attracted to DiNiro. Both actresses do a fine job. All the characters are well-rounded and believable, and all are shown with their flaws.
The film is a remake of a 1962 film of the same name starring Gregory Peck and Robert Mitchum, both of whom also appear in this film, along with Joe Don Baker. Even if you have not seen the original, this film is awfully predictable, but Scorsese still gets you on the edge of your seat with his quick cutaways and masterful use of suspense techniques made famous by Alfred Hitchcock.
The opening title sequences are excellent, among the best I've ever seen. The cinematography is top notch. Camera movement and angles are innovative and captivating. There's a lot to recommend this film. It certainly rises above its weaknesses. It rates a B.
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