Director Andrew Dominik has to his credit two outstanding films, ‘Chopper’ (2000) and ‘The Assassination of Jesse James By the Coward Robert Ford’ (2007). His new film, ‘Killing Them Softly’, is based on a 1974 crime thriller, ‘Cogan’s Trade’ by George V. Higgins, which he sets in the US of 2008, when a dismal economy and hopeless political climate weigh the country down.
Brad Pitt, in yet another role played with stunning ease and confidence, plays Cogan, a hitman employed by a criminal. There is a lot of stylized dialogue, which the beautiful sequences of violence punctuate. Cogan can’t kill up front, and can’t bear to have his victims plead for mercy, so he “kills them softly”. Richard Jenkins and James Gandolfini add to the superb cast in this absolutely groovy film.