The Gang That Couldn't Shoot Straight

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Released 1971

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Movie Summary

Director:
James Goldstone
Released:
1971
Rating:
PG-13

The Gang That Couldn't Shoot Straight is a 1971 crime comedy based on the eponymous book by journalist Jimmy Breslin. It is about two New York City Mafia gangs at war with one another. The film follows Kid Sally Palumbo (Jerry Orbach) as he and his Red Hook gang attempt to kill mob boss Baccala (Lionel Stander) and take over his Brooklyn turf. Egged on by his obese mother, Big Momma (Jo Van Fleet), Palumbo and his small-time crew, including Big Jelly (Irving Selbst) and Beppo (Herve Villachaize), prove spectacular failures. They make their collections using a lion for intimidation and generally go about their business in the least effective way. The film also features an early appearance by Robert DeNiro as an illegal immigrant from Italy named Mario who cons the mafia into giving to fake charities. The Gang That Couldn't Shoot Straight is a hilarious mob comedy that hits its target.

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Themes

Dark Comedy, Parody & Spoof, Classics, Crime