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31st Jul 2019

The trailer for Martin Scorsese’s The Irishman is here to restore your faith in Robert De Niro and Al Pacino

Wil Jones

Finally, it looks like Robert De Niro is going to be in a good film again!

Robert De Niro. Al Pacino. Two of the greatest cinematic titans of our era.

The former, the undeniable force that gave us undisputed modern classics like Little Fockers, Dirty Grandpa, What Just Happened, and of course, the voice of a CGI fish in Shark Tale and the star of those bread adverts. The later, the thespian genius immortalised in 88 MinutesJack and Jill, Ocean’s Thirteen and Gigli.

And together, who could forget their iconic pairing in Righteous Kill, alongside 50 Cent?

Anyway, what we’re trying to say is that Robert De Niro and Al Pacino, despite obviously being era-defining talents, haven’t made the best choices in recent years. Ok, on De Niro’s side, Silver Linings Playbook was decent and Joker looks like it could be good, and Pacino is great in his small part in Once Upon A Time In Hollywood. But generally, their batting average this century is pretty piss poor.

But redemption is on the horizon. De Niro and Pacino have re-teamed for their third on-screen collaboration, in Netflix’s The Irishman, directed by Martin Scorsese – who unlike Bobby and Al, has continued to make good films past the 1970s and 1980s, and well into the present day.

And finally, we have the first trailer.

Scorsese and De Niro, of course, are one of the most successful actor/director partnerships of all time, having made eight previous movies together, including Taxi DriverGoodfellas and Raging Bull. In recent years, Leonardo DiCaprio has been Marty’s leading man of choice, but with Quentin Tarantino now seemingly haven stolen Leo away from him, he has gone back to his first muse, making his first proper movie with De Niro since 1995’s Cape Fear (they did team-up for a short to promote a Macau casino in 2015, but that doesn’t count).

Shockingly, this is Al Pacino’s first time working with the director, but completing the main cast are two other veterans of Scorsese-De Niro collabs: Joe Pesci (Casino, Goodfellas), and Harvey Keitel (Mean Streets, Taxi Driver).

As for the trailer? In all honesty, it looks good, not great, and if it didn’t have the name of America’s greatest living filmmaker name attached, we might not be getting so excited – but we have faith in Marty. De Niro plays real-life Frank ‘The Irishman’ Sheeran, a World War vet and union official who also worked for the mob. It looks like we’re squarely back in the Goodfellas/Casino territory here, with a long sweeping delve into the intricacies of organised crime, with particular focus on Sheeran’s relationship with union boss Jimmy Hoffa (Pacino), whose 1975 disappearance remains unsolved.

The Irishman is due to hit Netflix this Autumn, along with a run in selected cinemas to make it eligible for the Best Picture Oscar that the streaming service so desperately desires.