1983 had a lot of notable films including “Return Of The Jedi,” “National Lampoon’s Vacation,” “The Outsiders,” “Sudden Impact,” Risky Business,” “The Dead Zone” etc. One film that came out in December, is none other than “Scarface.” The movie made enough revenue at the box office, however at the time of its release, it received negative reviews from critics, except for a few famous people including Siskel & Ebert who gave the film Four Stars with a Two Thumbs Up approval, Cher liked it from beginning to end and legendary director, Martin Scorsese heavily praised it.
A few celebs hated Scarface including Lucille Ball, John Irving, Kurt Vonnegut, and one of my favorite movie critics, Leonard Martin also hated it. As the years went on, it became a Cult Classic to movie goers, as well as Hip-Hop culture. The film is often parodied or referenced in other works. Later reception has led the film to become a critically acclaimed masterpiece.
Fun Fact: This is Eminem’s favorite movie of all time. If it weren’t for Scarface, Slim Shady would’ve never existed in the first place. Video Game/Film Critic Angry Video Game Nerd/James Rolfe also mentioned Scarface as one of his favorite movies.
A remake has been confirmed by Universal Pictures. The Coen Brothers were hired to write the script for the upcoming film soon to be released in 2018.
Note from 2021: There’s no confirmation if the remake is in development.
It doesn’t matter if SPOILERS. Scarface has been parodied or referenced numerous times.
Wealthy & Poor Aspects
Wealthy: Al Pacino did an excellent job for his iconic performance as Tony Montana. He deserves Bonus Points for delivering memorable quotes. He also nailed the Cuban accent courtesy of his Method Acting technique. Al confirmed Tony Montana is his favorite character he has ever played.
Other Cast Members such as Michelle Phieffer, (fresh from Grease 2) Steven Bauer, F. Murray Abraham & Robert Loggia all did a decent job for their respective performances.
The script is written by Academy Award Winner Oliver Stone, (Platoon, Wall Street, Natural Born Killers) is very memorable. One of the most quotable movies of all time. The Academy Awards shoulda gave him an Oscar for “Best Original Screenplay.”
My favorite line from Tony is, “First you get the money, then you get the power, then you get the women.” He makes a legit point when it comes to making it in the big leagues.
Character Development involving Tony’s rise to power both professionally and personally. As the film progresses, he becomes addicted to cocaine which affects his personal and professional life. His flaws are addiction, greed, power and anger. Each one takes a turn on him costing his best friend Manny and sister Gina. Despite his flaws, he has redeeming qualities like preventing a woman and two kids from being blown up.
Chemistry between Tony and the people he interacts serves as the main highlight.
Action Sequences contain a lot of bullets leaving a big bloody crimson stain. Don’t forget the final gunfight.
To spice things up a notch. Take a shot every time somebody utters out an F-Bomb. I’d stick to water or non-alcoholic beverages. Alcohol poisoning is a big no no.
Chemistry between Tony and his allies serve as the main highlight. His interactions with his close friend Manny, his love interest Elvira, his sister Gina, his boss, Frank Lopez & his business partner Sosa help carry the story.
Although an epic crime drama, there’s some funny moments like Manny sticking his tongue out in front of a woman.
Music was scored by Giorgio Moroder. Same guy who did “Midnight Express” & “The NeverEnding Story.”
Catchy Tunes from the 1980s. Elizabeth Daily (yep, the voice of Tommy Pickles from Rugrats & Buttercup) contributing to the soundtrack with two of her songs featured are “I’m Hot Tonight” & “Shake It Up.”
Cinematography was decent without suffering from technical flaws.
Primary Themes are Greed, Addiction, Power & Downfall. Each one is handled maturely.
If you’re a fan of “Breaking Bad” Mark Margolis (Hector) makes an appearance as one of Sosa’s henchmen.
Tony’s infamous line, “Say hello to my little friend” is quoted in a lot of works.
Steven Spielberg shot one scene of the infamous climatic gunfight. He’s good friends with Brian De Palma & Oliver Stone. The closest thing Steven has worked with Al.
Poor: I couldn’t find anything negative to point out. Its one those movies that are flawless. I’ll give the cast & crew an Extra Point for making a flawless movie as possible.
The Final Verdict: A, FOR APEX!
From my point of view, Scarface is my favorite film of 1983. Despite the fact I wasn’t around in The 80s, it should’ve won “Best Picture” not “Terms Of Endearment.” No wonder The Oscars are such a buzzkill like Debbie Downer from SNL! If you still own a PS2 or Xbox, go out and buy the video game called “Scarface: The World Is Yours.” Trust me, you’re gonna have a fun experience with this game. Don’t forget to play “Grand Theft Auto: Vice City.” A spiritual successor to Scarface. Let’s hope The Coen Brothers better not screw this up. At least they have some experience on remaking the John Wayne movie, “True Grit” look how that turned out.