Greetings, my friends — have y'all heard about The Irishman? Apparently over 13 million people watched in its opening week, BUT only 18% finished it. It's a Martin Scorsese movie with a cast of legends, but it's THREE HOURS AND 29 minutes, so people are often too busy/bored to finish it. BUT NOT ME. Today, I'm going to watch it for you and give you a full recap (that doesn't take three hours of your time).
Here's how Netflix describes the movie:
OK, let's get this long-ass party started. We begin by meeting Frank Sheeran. Frank is a very elderly veteran who is telling us about his past days as a hitman.
We spend the first 40 minutes learning how Frank became a hitman. After serving in the military, Frank became a meat delivery driver and eventually started selling shipments of meat to some gangsters (random, I know). Then, Frank got in trouble for a "missing" meat shipment, leading to him going to court and being defended by a union lawyer named Bill Bufalino (he looks familiar because it's Ray Romano from Everybody Loves Raymond).
Frank meets Bill's cousin, Russell, who is basically the boss man. He's in charge of the Bufalino family's criminal activity. Bill completes miscellaneous illegal tasks for Russell and other criminals, from roughing someone up for owing money to burning down a laundry place.
Off topic — Frank's/Robert De Niro's eyes are aggressively, distractingly blue in this movie and it reminds me of something but I can't put my finger on it. Maybe a Sin City character?
We meet Jimmy Hoffa (played by Al Pacino). Jimmy is the head of a massive union known as the Teamsters and he works with the Bufalino family. This dude seems intense and highly irritable, but he quickly connects with Frank and they become buddies.
Frank has a daughter named Peggy. Peggy seems standoffish/scared of him and he can't seem to understand why. Perhaps it's because she saw him beat the shit out of a dude, ruthlessly stomping his hand against the curb.
Peggy also seems put-off by her dad's friend, Russell. Perhaps it's because she saw what he tried to do to a kid in Home Alone.
WAIT, was it the Night King?! Is that what I was thinking of? Whatever, I don't know, who cares, let's move on.
So, Frank starts working closely with Jimmy, traveling along with him to handle business. And guess what? Peggy actually likes Jimmy! He surprises her with ice cream in one scene and in another we see Peggy speaking to her class about Jimmy on "Career Day."
WE ARE ONE HOUR DOWN. TWO AND A HALF TO GO, Y'ALL. We see even more of Frank and Jimmy doing things together, but eventually Jimmy goes to prison for jury tampering.
Since Jimmy is in prison, a man named Fitz takes charge of Jimmy's responsibilities. Fitz is far more well-liked than Jimmy amongst the mafia because Fitz is super generous about loaning folks money.
Jimmy isn't thrilled about Fitz's way of doing business.
Meanwhile, Jimmy is in prison eating ice cream and whatnot. One thing I haven't mentioned, JIMMY EATS SO MUCH ICE CREAM. Seriously, like every other scene is him shoveling sundaes down his mouth and honestly, I know I'm going to be staring through the glass doors of a grocery store's frozen food aisle later, trying to choose between 35 different Ben & Jerry's flavors and it's 100% this movie's fault.
Four years later, Jimmy gets a pardon from President Nixon and he's a free man. Jimmy immediately begins scheming and trying to get back in power.
So, Jimmy starts talking A LOT of shit! He's basically annoyed that he isn't being welcomed back into power with open arms and he doesn't sugarcoat his frustration, but other folks within the groups of criminals aren't liking his disrespect. He's really rubbing some people the wrong way.
Russell calmly tries to talk to Jimmy and be like, "Hey, man, some people feel like you're not being very nice, can you be nicer?"
And Jimmy declines to be nicer.
I tell ya, if Jimmy ain't eating it, he's talking about it.
So Russell goes to Frank and he's like, "Jimmy's trippin', if you can't talk some sense into him then 'it's what it is.'" Though they don't specify what "it" is, my educated guess is that it hits you right in the skull... For the record, I don't mean a brain freeze from ice cream, I'm thinking it's bullets to the noggin'.
Frank tries to talk to Jimmy, but Jimmy just isn't hearing it. He insists he wants to be back in power, period. He thinks other criminal higher-ups won't do anything to him because he has dirt that could put them in prison.
Sometime in the not-so-distant future, Russell tells Frank that not only have the higher-ups decided to kill Jimmy, but THEY'RE GOING TO MAKE FRANK DO IT.
THE MILEY CYRUS BLUE EYES MEME! THAT'S what it was.
There's an elaborate plan to have Jimmy killed that ends with Frank and Jimmy alone in a house, where Frank shoots Jimmy in the back of the head.
Peggy (who is older now, obviously) still wants nothing to do with her father, Frank, especially after the disappearance of Jimmy, who she adored. Frank pretends he doesn't know what happened to Jimmy.
WE'RE AT THE LAST HALF HOUR! Guess what? It's as dark as the rest of the movie. You find out what happened to these guys years later. Let's start with Russell — he gets locked up for conspiracy to kill a witness after getting caught speaking too freely to someone wearing a wire.
Frank gets charged with bribery, labor racketeering, and some other bullshit things*.
In the future, we see Russell and Frank in prison looking much older. Russell had a stroke and Frank is having arthritis issues.
Russell and Frank share a meal and briefly talk about Jimmy. We're told that elderly Russell winds up in the prison hospital and eventually dies.
Frank eventually gets out of prison and he tries to see Peggy at the bank she works at, but she quickly dodges him.
We see Frank buy himself an expensive casket for whenever he passes away, then we see him in his nursing home, chatting with a priest. The priest says he'll be visiting Frank again after the Christmas holiday break.
As the priest leaves, Frank asks him to leave the door partially open, a callback to a thing Jimmy did earlier in the movie, as he preferred to have doors left cracked open.