“Killing Them Softly” is not so soft. Starring Brad Pitt as Jackie Cogan a hired enforcer who is sought out to restore order after a protected card game is robbed by a couple of goons. This is not the first time this game has been hit, it is the second. The first time it was robbed by one of it’s own. Markie Trattman (Ray Liotta) knocks off his own game and makes off with the cash. Years later after a few too many drinks he admits he was behind it. Everyone laughs it off.
However this time around no one is laughing. Suspicion is immediately cast on Markie. For this reason it seemed like a great mark to target. There is not much brains behind the operation. The robbers for this job are a few cards short of a full deck. Both have recently been paroled and one seems to have sustained permanent damage from years of alcohol and drug use. Frankie (Scoot McNairy) is the brains of the two and that is not saying much. His friend Russell (Ben Mendelsohn) is going to get both men killed.
When it is discovered that Markie did not hire the guys for the hit the real perps are sought out. Jackie (Pitt) arrives on the scene and makes his presence known and is not shy about sharing how he thinks the situation should be handled. Needing assistance with a kill Jackie brings on colleague
Mickey (James Gandolfini) to get the job done. Only problem is Mickey is not the most stable character these days. Jackie will have his hands full with killings needed to be done and situations to be handled accordingly.
“Killing Them Softly” is a dark tale with graphic scenes. The undertone of the economy crashing during the 2008 election was an interesting addition to a rather odd story. Performances were very pleasing. Pitt as the enforcer was impressive. He managed to be the bad ass on the scene with a touch of humor. This film is not for the squeamish as there are several scenes that are brutal and very hard to handle. “Killing Them Softly” is a package mix of ‘The Departed’ and ‘Pulp Fiction’, something you have seen before with very little improvement.