The newly released film The Drop features actor James Gandolfini (Cousin Marv) in his final performance before his death in June 2013. Tom Hardy (Inception, The Dark Knight Rises) plays the protagonist, bartender Bob Saginowski, who finds himself in the middle of a robbery gone awry. Gandolfini plays Bob’s Cousin Marv, owner of the bar where Bob works.
The Drop is based on the short story, Animal Rescue, written by popular crime novelist Dennis Lehane, who also wrote the screenplay. (The short story takes place in Lehane’s Boston; the film takes place in Gandolfini’s New York.) In the film, Bob rescues a puppy from a garbage can and falls for a neighborhood waitress (Noomi Rapace, The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo) who helps Bob take care of the dog. That’s the softer side of Bob. He and Cousin Marv supervise the “drops” of bookie money at the bar. Although Cousin Marv tells Bob that back in the day he was feared on the streets, Gandolfini isn’t the boss in The Drop. Chechen mobsters are now in charge of the neighborhood and they lean on Marv and Bob to make up for missing money. Alonso Duralde of The Wrap wrote: “If ‘The Drop’ fails to excite as a crime saga, it does at least offer one interesting character: bartender Bob Saginowski.” And there’s watching Gandolfini in his final role, which also may compel some moviegoers.