Michael Shannon stars Richard Kuklinski, the New Jersey hit man believed to have killed more than 100 people in the decades leading up to his arrest in 1986. This biopic sounds like a perfect vehicle for Shannon, who's come to specialize in playing psychopaths, but it doesn't give him much to work with. Screenwriters Morgan Land and Ariel Vromen recount the most gruesome episodes of Kuklinski's criminal career (call it a greatest-hits collection) without attempting to understand him. They note that he was a devoted husband and father, as if this were enough to make him sympathetic, and leave the rest to somber lighting and Shannon's pained expressions. Vromen directed; with Ray Liotta and Winona Ryder.
By Ben Sachs