After a four-year hiatus following the release of The Irishman in 2019, director Martin Scorsese returns to cinemas later this year with The Killers of the Flower Moon. This latest film is an adaptation of the 2017 nonfiction book of the same name by David Grann based on the murders of members of the Osage nation in Oklahoma in the 1920s. The project will be Scorsese’s twenty-sixth feature film, his sixth collaboration with lead actor Leonardo DiCaprio, and his tenth with actor Robert De Niro.
The project is the latest of several historical dramas from Scorsese, many of which take place in the twentieth century and deal with themes of crime, corruption, and greed in America. The film premiered at the 2023 Cannes Film Festival, where it received a nine-minute standing ovation and overwhelmingly positive reviews from critics.
In critic Peter Bradshaw’s five-star review of the film published in The Guardian, he describes the film as an “instant American classic.”
Everything You Should Know Before Seeing Killers of The Flower Moon
As a film that’s sure to be surrounded by a heap of Oscar buzz, Killers of the Flower Moon is a must-watch for any cinephile. But before you do so, get up to speed with all the info you need to know.
The Legacy of Martin Scorsese
Martin Scorsese is one of the most iconic and acclaimed directors in American cinema, with a decades-spanning career which has brought audiences such beloved films as Taxi Driver, Goodfellas, and The Departed, among many others. Scorsese emerged in the 1970s as one of the major figures of the New Hollywood movement alongside filmmakers such as John Cassavetes, Robert Altman, Francis Ford Coppola, and Peter Bogdanovich. Scorsese’s career is unique, however, in that he has managed to sustain a consistent level of acclaim and popularity for almost fifty years.
Scorsese’s early career consisted of several collaborations with De Niro in films like Mean Streets and Raging Bull. After decades of success, Scorsese started a long-standing relationship with DiCaprio, starting with Gangs of New York in 2002.
Killers of the Flower Moon now marks the first time both De Niro and DiCaprio have starred in the same Scorsese film.
The official story description is as follows: “Members of the Osage tribe in the United States are murdered under mysterious circumstances in the 1920s, sparking a major F.B.I. investigation involving J. Edgar Hoover.”
The film, which deals explicitly with crime against Indigenous peoples, features several Indigenous actors, including actress Lily Gladstone (Certain Women) as Mollie Burkhart, one of the characters in the film. When the project was in development in 2019, Scorsese traveled to Oklahoma to speak with Principal Chief Geoffrey M. Standing Bear of the Osage nation to discuss how the Osage would be represented in the film as well as their role in participating in it. Following the premiere at Cannes this year, Standing Bear appeared alongside Gladstone, Scorsese, De Niro and DiCaprio at the post-film press conference.
The film is thought to be a close dramatization of Grann’s book, with an adapted screenplay by Eric Roth.
Killers of the Flower Moon will premiere in theaters in the U.S. on October 20, 2023, in a wide release by Paramount Pictures and Apple TV+. There is currently no streaming release announced.
Find out what to expect from the latest Scorsese film by checking out the official trailer below.
Here is a look at the main cast appearing in Killers of the Flower Moon:
- Leonardo DiCaprio as Ernest Burkhart
- Robert De Niro as William Hale
- Lily Gladstone as Mollie Burkhart
- Jesse Plemons as Tom White, BOI agent investigating Hale
- Tantoo Cardinal as Lizzie Q, Mollie’s mother
- John Lithgow as Prosecutor Leaward
- Brendan Fraser as W. S. Hamilton, Hale’s corrupt attorney
- Cara Jade Myers as Anna Brown, Mollie’s sister
- JaNae Collins as Reta, Mollie’s cousin
- Jillian Dion as Minnie, Mollie’s sister
- Jason Isbell as Bill Smith
- William Belleau as Henry Roan, Mollie’s brother-in-law
- Louis Cancelmi as Kelsie Morrison
- Scott Shepherd as Bryan Burkhart
The film is directed and co-produced by Martin Scorsese from a screenplay by Eric Roth. It features cinematography by Rodrigo Prieto, editing by longtime collaborator Thelma Schoonmaker, and music by Robbie Robertson of the Band.
The film will have a runtime of 206 minutes, or 3 hours and 26 minutes.
The film will be released with an R rating.
Will Killers of the Flower Moon Be Available Streaming on a Streaming Service?
While a streaming release has yet to be announced, audiences can expect the film to appear exclusively on Apple TV+ in the months following its theatrical release.
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