The Public Eye
The Public Eye ★★★½ 1992 (R)
Underappreciated film noir homage casts Pesci as a crime photographer with an unsuspected romantic streak. It's 1942 in NYC and cynical freelancer Leon “Bernzy” Bernstein's always looking for the perfect shot. Hershey's the recent widow whose nightclubowner husband had mob ties and decides Pesci would be a likely patsy for helping her out. Hershey seems decorative and the romantic angle never quite develops, but Pesci delivers a rich, lowkey performance as the visionary, hardboiled artist. Climatic mob shootout is cinematic bullet ballet. Based loosely on the career of '40s photog Weegee, who defined New York and its times in his work. 98m/C VHS . Joe Pesci, Barbara Hershey, Stanley Tucci, Richard Foronjy, Richard Riehle, Jared Harris, Jerry Adler, Dominic Chianese, Gerry Becker; D: Howard Franklin; W: Howard Franklin; M: John Barry.