Over the last couple of years, film goers have been inundated with gangster movies. The latest is first time film director Michael Karbelnikoff's Mobsters, which chronicles the rise of four young men trying to overcome their lives of poverty in New York from 1917 to 1930. Charlie "Lucky" Luciano (Christian Slater, Robin Hood, Prince of Thieves), fellow Sicilian Frank Costello (Costas Mandylor) and Jewish Meyer Lansky (Patrick Dempsey) and Benny "Bugsy" Siegel (Richard Grieco) start their life of crime by running scotch for bootlegger Arnold Rothstein (F. Murray Abraham).
Everything is running smoothly in their little operation and the money is pouring in, until a rival crime family headed by Don Massaria (Anthony Quinn) hijacks their booze shipment and the power struggle begins. Being boss depended on the loyalty of you men and since everyone wanted to be boss, no one could be trusted. There's plenty of violence as the crime families fight for supremacy.
The wonderful costumes (beaded flapper dresses and double breasted suits) and dark, moody sets look spectacular.
Abraham doesn't have much screen time, but when he's on, he commands you attention and Quinn gives a boisterous, flamboyant performance. The films weakness is the script, you don't get to know enough about the young men who were responsible for bringing together various crime families to form an organized syndicate. The pretty-boy actors give unfeeling portraits of what should be interesting men. There are no real emotions, which leaves the film with gloss, but little substance.