Carlito's Way ★★★★

Brian De Palma and Al Pacino team up again for a sort of quasi-sequel to Scarface - but while the earlier film professed that The World is Yours, this one is more an an Escape to Paradise as Pacino's titular character, having being released from prison, wants nothing more than to go straight and live a pleasant life in the Bahamas. But a man with so many underworld contacts will never find making a clean break to be so easy! The film is a much more sombre affair than the earlier masterpiece, but still allows plenty of time for De Palma's trademark visual flair. There's plenty of audacious scenes and the whole things builds up like a car crash in motion - Pacino's wily ex-criminal may still have all the moves, but you really can't expect everyone else to play by your rules. Carlito's Way is underpinned by two brilliant performances from Al Pacino and Sean Penn - the latter especially really steals the show as a sleazy lawyer. The final half hour is absolutely brilliant cinema, made all the more ominous by the fact that you know what is coming. But hey, its all about hope and that Escape to Paradise.

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