Cape Fear (1991) directed by Martin Scorsese
Robert De Niro as Max Cady and Nick Nolte as Sam Bowden.

Cady: Well, what shall be my compensation, sir, for being held down and sodomized by four white guys or… four black guys? Shall my compensation be the same? What is the formula for compensation, sir?
Bowden: Well, how about ten thousand dollars in cash?
Cady: Do I…? Well, let’s just break that down…
Bowden: No, now wait, wait….
Cady: Well no, let’s just break it down…
Bowden: …wait a minute. You see, that figure just came to the top of my head…
: Well, let’s just say for argument’s sake, let’s say twenty thousand. Let’s say thirty thousand. Let’s say f… I tell you what, let’s say fifty thousand. Fifty thousand into fourteen years. Fourteen years times three hundred sixty five days is about… I’d say about five thousand days. Now you divide that by fifty thousand and that’s uh… that’s like ten dollars a day (laughs). That’s not even minimum wage, to say nothing about the family that I lost, the respect that I lost. I don’t think you really, really understand what we’re talking about here. Fourteen years.

6 Responses to “Cape Fear (1991)”

  1. This is the rare Scorsese film that just doesn’t hold up on repeat viewing. De Niro does good work here (as does Ms. Lewis) but all in all this does not rate with the J. Lee Thompson’s 1962 original with Robert Mitchum and Gregory Peck.

    The film does have supporters for sure, and I would certainly back away if confronted, as I respect Marty too much to go at the film, but it is problematic, methinks.

  2. No need to back off from your view Sam. The film doesn’t work as well for you and nothing more needs said. As for me, I’m a fan of both the original and the Scorsese version. In addition to the fine work by De Niro and Lewis I also thought Nolte and the rest of the cast gave good performances. The only point where the film lost me a little was during its feverishly melodramatic ending, but I can forgive it.

  3. Gotta disagree with you Sam. Comparing it to the original is understandable, but it’s really no contest. Despite hitting most of the same beats, they’re totally different movies. I really love the overheated quality of this one, right up to the feverish ending that Sartre doesn’t care for.

  4. The ending never worked for me, and it remains the rare Scorsese that just doesn’t hold up.

  5. I think Sam if we polled 100 random people on this, most of them would agree with you. Maybe that’s partly why I like it. I’m always a fan of the underdog.

  6. And that is an admirable trait for sure!

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