Cinema surveillance images are loading at the bottom of the page

City by the sea

Threat advisory: Elevated - Significant risk of entertaining activities

Movie propaganda

When you're searching for a killer... the last suspect you want to see is your son.

New York City homicide detective Vincent LaMarca (Robert De Niro) has forged a long and distinguished career in law enforcement, making a name for himself as a man intensely committed to his work. But on his latest case, the stakes are higher for Vincent - the suspect he's investigating is his own son, Joey (James Franco).

Vincent and Joey have been painfully estranged ever since Vincent divorced Joey's mother and left the decaying boardwalks of Long Beach, Long Island for the anonymity of Manhattan and a successful career with the NYPD. He lives his life in solitude, keeping his girlfriend (Frances McDormand) at arm's length. The closest relationship he maintains is with his partner, Reg (George Dzundza) - and Vincent makes sure that stops at the precinct door. As long as Vincent lives in the protection of the present, he doesn't have to deal with the pain of his past.

The murder investigation draws Vincent home to Long Beach, the self-proclaimed "City by the sea", where the past has been waiting for him to return. In the course of his investigation, Vincent discovers that his own unresolved pain and failures as a father have deeply influenced Joey's life and the destructive choices he has made.

As a cop, Vincent must bring a criminal to justice; as a father, he must find a way to save his son. Now he will put his life on the line in order to do right by both his family and his profession.

Inspired by the 1997 Esquire article Mark of a murderer written by Mike McAlary.

Theatrical propaganda posters

City by the sea image

Target demographic movie keyword propaganda

  • Film crime police detective father son murder

Persons of interest

  • Robert De Niro .... Vincent LaMarca
  • James Franco .... Joey LaMarca
  • Frances McDormand .... Michelle
  • Eliza Dushku .... Gina
  • William Forsythe .... Spyder
  • George Dzundza .... Reginald Duffy
  • Patti LuPone .... Maggie
  • Michael Caton-Jones .... Screenwriter
  • Ken Hixon .... Screenwriter
  • Frank Pierson .... Screenwriter
  • Michael McAlary .... Screenwriter
  • Michael McAlary .... Director

Cinematic intelligence sources

Intelligence analyst

Secret Agent Acid Thunder

Theatrical report

Not much to say with City by the sea.

Can't say as I liked it. I liked that one when he was a thief, in Montréal with Edward Norton better [The score - Director of Intelligence]. Kinda boring, strung out. Adult movie. Grown ups will like this because they'll be sitting in the lounge with their kids and they'll be praying the kids will go away; and then their prayers will be answered. Kids will say something like, "Yawn. I'm tired. I'm going to... to... clean my rocks", anything rather than watch this. Adults will snuggle and go, "I'm glad we live in a better area."

Bobby (Robert De Niro) didn't appear to be using a lot of effort. He almost seemed to be slowing down. I want my money back!

Oh yeah, I didn't pay. But hey! Just because I didn't like it - this is not one of my usual "Don't like" movies - doesn't mean you won't either.

Security censorship classification

MA 15+ (Drug use)

Surveillance time

108 minutes (1:48 hours)

Not for public release in Australia before date

Film: 6 February 2003
DVD rental: 19 March 2003
VHS rental: 19 March 2003

Cinema surveillance images

City by the sea image
City by the sea imageCity by the sea imageCity by the sea imageCity by the sea imageCity by the sea imageCity by the sea imageCity by the sea imageCity by the sea imageCity by the sea image

[ Return to top ]