Written and Directed by Lee Kolinsky
Starring Joseph A. Halsey, Russ Camarda, Tony Kost Michael Riccio, Robert Helmers
Review by Monica Jowett
Short filmmaker Lee Kolinsky delivers a New Yorkian crime tale about revenge, with stylish poise and authentic performances.
Over the last 15 years, Angelo (Joseph A. Halsey) has worked his way to the top of the crime family, using a music producer front to fend off the FBI. However, an old friend Roman (Michael Riccio) is out of prison and out for revenge to get his former life back.
Confronted by an FBI agent (Russ Camarda) who gives thinly veiled threats to Angelo’s legitimate business dealings, suggests he’s after a way to get Angelo and bring him down. That’s when Roman is released after just 15 years, and is more than ready to get back what is his. And Angelo is more than surprised to see his old friend return.
Films of this genre regularly fall flat with audiences, with the bar being raised so high with classic crime movies like The Godfather trilogy, films from Martin Scorsese, or even high end TV shows like Boardwalk Empire, saturating viewers with endless "gangster" references. It is really important for any filmmaker attempting this type of movie to remain original and avoid clichés...unless you have Joe Pesci in the cast list, in which case just give him a pen and let him run wild.
That being said, there is a carefully written script, with noir style direction is brilliant for this short film Stand Up Guy, capturing a small part of a gangster life. With each actor fitting their part, down to the New York accent and smart suits, makes this short is a great piece with punchy dialogue from writer director Lee Kolinksy, who continues to impress with his filmmaking skills.