The Untouchables Train Station Shot By Shot
One of Director Brian DePalma’s seminal works is the 1987 gangster classic The Untouchables. The story, which is based on a book by Eliot Ness, follows the group of men he put together to take down the infamous mobster Al Capone and break his powerful grip on the city of Chicago during Prohibition. What is considered to be the most famous sequence in the movie takes place at Union Station where Ness (Kevin Costner) and George Stone (Andy Garcia), the only ones left in The Untouchables group try to intercept Capone’s bookkeeper (Jack Kehoe) before he’s sent out of town. Taking inspiration from Eistenstein’s Odessa Steps sequence in Battleship Potemkin (1925), DePalma creates a highly suspenseful shootout using slow motion and rapid editing. The 11 minute video above created by Antonios Papantoniou goes into fine detail examining the various kinds of shots (angles and running time) from beginning to end. Film students and fans of the movie will surely enjoy learning how DePalma constructed this brilliant piece of pure cinema.