Gangs of New York
Here's the most important thing I learned from watching Martin Scorsese's historical drama about 19th century New York City: If you have good teeth, you've got it made.
Pretty much everyone of any consequence has good teeth in "Gangs of New York." I'm not sure exactly where they got the dental hygiene, but it just goes to show you that when it comes to high-profile actors acting in a period piece, looking good is always more important than accuracy. After all, Cameron Diaz has that next Revlon commercial to worry about. A Leo with bad teeth could affect sales of Leo posters and Leo t-shirts. Naturally, these two dentally healthy individuals manage to find each other in Five Points, the New York neighborhood where this film takes place. Amsterdam Vallon (Leonardo DiCaprio) is the son of slain Irish leader Priest Vallon (Liam Neeson) while Jenny Everdeane (Cameron Diaz) is a pickpocket. They see each other for the first time, smile, and discover that they are the only two people in the entire movie with good teeth. Then they have sex.
Amsterdam, whose friends call him "Dam" for short, has come back to Five Points to find and kill Bill the Butcher (Daniel Day-Lewis) because Bill is the man who killed his father, Priest Vallon. Priest Vallon represented the Irish immigrants in New York while Bill represented the Nativists. Bill was interested in keeping the Irish hordes out of America while Priest wanted the Irish hordes in America. They fought and Priest lost, though the hordes kept coming. A young Amsterdam witnessed the murder and vowed to avenge his father. Consequently, after getting out of some orphanage, he returns to Five Points. Unfortunately, he meets Bill and finds that Bill has good teeth and starts to take a liking to him.
Other people with good teeth: Boss Tweed (Jim Broadbent), who's the political power of the time, but still has to answer to Bill, Happy Jack (John C. Reilly), who used to fight for Priest but is now a cop, Johnny Sirocco (Henry Thomas), who's Amsterdam's friend, but betrays him to Bill, and Monk (Brendan Gleeson), who also fought for Priest for a price.
I expect "Gangs of New York" to increase dental exams across the country. After all, who could resist dentists' potentially potent new slogan: Have white teeth -- have sex with Cameron Diaz. I'm going to get a cleaning right now.
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