Archives for posts with tag: Nicole Kidman

Warning: I’m going to sort-of spoil “Destroyer” (2018) for you. Nicole Kidman uglies herself up to play a burnt-out detective with one last shot to close the case that’s haunted her for 17 years. It felt like “Rush: The Later Years” or a dark take on “Saving Grace.” We keep going back and forth between her ill-fated days undercover and her current attempt to find resolution. I was kind of getting into it, although there’s too much I’ve-been-a-bad-mommy subplot. But the film buries a lie in the back-and-forth to create a plot twist, and I don’t like being lied to.

We’ve been trained by Coppola and Scorsese to expect mobster movies to follow epic story arcs, so it might feel a little odd to watch one that’s more tightly wound around a small series of events. Or maybe “Billy Bathgate” (1991) isn’t all that good. It didn’t do much for the career of Loren Dean (Billy), who carries this Depression-era story headlined by Dustin Hoffman, Nicole Kidman and Bruce Willis. Kidman sleeps with all of them while being married to Xander Berkeley, a more interesting subplot than the main gangster boilerplate. Billy’s a young wannabe. Maybe this film was, too.