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Carlito’s Way (1993)

Carlito’s Way (1993)

(p.229) (p.221) Chapter 22 Carlito’s Way (1993)
Brian De Palma's Split-Screen
Douglas Keesey
University Press of Mississippi

This chapter examines De Palma's departure from Scarface (1983) in Carlito's Way (1993). At first hesitant to make another Scarface, he was eventually persuaded to do the film: “What I liked about it was it was completely different from Scarface. Where Tony Montana is cold, calculating and willing to do anything to rise to the top, Carlito is at the other end of the spectrum: he's trying to reform. He slowly gets dragged back into the game.” The new film's many references to Scarface also help the viewer mark the differences separating them, as do their stylistic differences. The chapter explores Carlito's character throughout the film and the doubts it raises about whether or not Carlito is backsliding into his old ways—perhaps in the same way that Carlito's Way is turning into another Scarface.

Keywords:   Carlito's Way, Scarface, gangster films, Al Pacino, reformed criminal

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