Mortal Soul

Scorsese and Cage elevate the EKG of the mean streets

Excluding a strange and utterly unnecessary racial slur hurled at a turbaned taxi driver, Bringing Out the Dead is comprised of some profoundly compassionate ideas and scenes (note Frank's hallucinations and the guilt theme). It would be nice to gush poetically over it, to say things like: "Graffiti and derelicts hover like a beckoning penance" or "This rumination upon mortality reawakens the soul" or (every payola-critic's standby) "A shattering triumph!" But it's much more accurate to state that this time around Marty's New York is simply a pretty cool mess. Plenty of soulful blood is splattered, but only about half of it congeals.

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