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The North Star


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Crime/Drama/History, USA, 2013

Synopsis Nucky, sitting in a cafe above the train tracks at New York City's Penn Station, gets pensive when he realizes he'd never before noticed that the rumbling of the trains below make his coffee cup tremble on the table. Soon, Margaret shows up to meet him. It's an awkward hello. She isn't very forthcoming with the details of her life. She's there because he called and said there was something he thought she'd want to know. He tells her that Eddie is "gone." She asks if he left Nucky's service, but Nucky changes the subject and gives her a gift for Teddy. Nucky finally starts to tell her, but again stops himself. She starts to tell him the kids are OK, then tells Nucky he can't just show up and tell her things that happen as a result of his "business." She asks if the gift for Teddy is "some sort of creature" because they don't have room for one.Nucky quips, "I wouldn't put something alive in a box."They both immediately realize that perhaps the last night they were together was when Owen Sleater's dead body was delivered in a box to Nucky's apartment. She leaves and says she really is sorry about Eddie, adding, "No one knew how to look after you like Mr. Kessler."Back in Washington, D.C., J. Edgar Hoover and Agent Knox try to figure out how much Eddie might have revealed to Nucky before he jumped. Hoover says the operation is compromised. Knox is trying to convince Hoover that a network of organized criminals is a real thing, but Hoover wants to nail big-name anarchists. Knox says he'll raise his head up in Atlantic City to get a feel for what anyone knows about him.Eli Thompson and Mickey Doyle go through Eddie's room looking for a safe deposit box key. They find his note in German. Neither of them can read it. Eli finds a couple of birds in a cage and it occurs to him to sift through the bird feed for the key. He finds it.At the Onyx Club, Daughter Maitland has another terse exchange with Chalky White. She's clearly trying to flirt with him but he rebuffs her at every turn. Chalky doesn't show much interest in her suggestion that she's working on a new song for the show. He says she should give the people what they've come to see.Paul Sagorsky at at the doctor's office and getting some spots on his hands checked. The doctor asks about Paul's drinking and he says in the last eight months he hasn't had a drink before dinner, "on account of the boy," referring to Tommy Darmody, who Julia's been caring for. He says he can stop after dinner, too, adding, "it's not so hard." The doctor says he's going to tell Paul "the things that can be done, and the thing you should be preparing yourself for." We don't hear the rest, but Paul walks out in a daze. He thinks he sees Richard Harrow down the hall and chases after him, slipping and falling down some stairs. Richard stands over him and asks if he's alright. Paul says he's dying.Eli is posing as Eddie Kessler at the bank, but a manager who knows Eli comes over and says he can't let Eli access the box without proper paperwork. The bank manager says they could both go to jail if he lets Eli into the box and adds, "We don't want that again, now, do we?"Chalky's wife Lenore doesn't like that Chalky took their son to the club and exposed him to jazz music, which he now wants to play. She asks Chalky if that's what he wants and he says, "What it matter what I want?" He gets up and leaves the room.At a bar, Richard tells Paul that he couldn't face Paul and Julia because of what he did. He then confesses he's done so many wrong things he's stopped counting. Paul tells him a story about killing a woman in the Philippines. Paul tells Richard he has sclerosis and will be dead in a year. He tells him he doesn't want to hear about Richard's problems and asks him to buy him another round of drinks.Eli can't sleep. He thinks he should drive to Philadelphia and check in on Willie and the business with his roommate. Eli's wife says it's not a good idea because Willie will think he's prying, and adds, "He'll talk when he wants to talk." He asks if she knows anyone who speaks German.Nucky is back in Tampa sitting with Bill McCoy. Some guys come to Bill and ask what the deal is with Augie Tucker. Bill tells Nucky that Augie "took off a few weeks ago," and claims he doesn't know why. Guns are drawn, including the bartender Sally pulling out a shotgun to urge the men to leave. They leave and Bill tells Nucky that Tucker is out but he has another investor, a connected guy from up north. Nucky agrees to meet the other investor. Lucky Luciano and Meyer Lansky walk in and shake Nucky's hand.Agent Knox shows up at the distillery. He notices Mickey holding Eddie's cane and Mickey quips that he's "going to use it to club rats." Eli counts out some cash for Knox, who steps forward and takes it. The whole exchange is tense and probably not giving Knox the insight he was looking for. As Knox is about to leave, Eli asks for a look at his badge. After looking at it, Eli says there is something Knox can do for him. We next see Knox at the bank asking for access to Eddie's safe deposit box, pressing the manager by asking him if he wants to interrupt a federal investigation.Julia hears Tommy talking to someone at the front door. She approaches and see Tommy was talking to Richard. Tommy turns to her and says, "He was in Wisconsin."Lucky, Meyer and Nucky -- along with Sally -- are watching an alligator fight. Nucky meets "Mr. Pierce," an Italian guy with a thick accent who reveals his name is Petrucelli. He says he prefers to be quiet, compared to Tucker's loudness. Nucky says they'll have to discuss it. Petrucelli says he stands by his reputation. They go back over to the alligator fight and Petrucelli talks to Lucky alone for a moment. He's recognized him from New York and says it's nice that Joe Masseria lets him go off and make his own money.Daughter Maitland puts on her show at the Onyx Club and Chalky watches, captivated.Agent Knox brings the safe deposit box back to Eli, claiming he was "sweating the whole time." Eli is surprised to see the money is all there, then wonders why else Eddie would have killed himself. Eli reaches into his jacket pocket and asks Knox if he speaks any German. He hands Eddie's note to Knox and asks him what it says. Knox reads a message Eddie wrote to his "dearest son" that he'd just received the news that he's a grandfather and can't express the joy. That's the end of the note. Eli starts to open up to Knox about how he worries about his own son in college. Eli cries a bit and Knox hands him a handkerchief. Eli notices the monogram is JTM.Lucky is nervous about Petrucelli, who he says is Joe Masseria's cousin. Meyer says they can cut Joe in on the deal. Lucky says it's not that easy. He says he can just kill Petrucelli or just back out the deal. Lansky doesn't want to hear any more about it. He tells Lucky he can do what he wants, but he's staying in. Lucky says they're partners, but Lansky says, "Not on this, not anymore." Lucky leaves.Nucky and Sally drink together late at night at her bar. Nucky asks Sally what she knows about Vincenzo Petrucelli. She tells Nucky he's probably already made up his mind and Nucky says he doesn't know. He then opens up about how he doesn't know why he keeps trying to build something when he might just be better off stopping. He tells her he lost a friend and is only wondering what Eddie's passing might mean for him. She's bored and punches him in the face. She says she doesn't know why she did it, but then she punches him again and says she hates a whiner. He threatens to punch her back, but doesn't -- until she wins up to punch him again. He punches her in the face and this leads to some intense sex as a storm rumbles outside.Julia tells Richard that Tommy -- who is looking up at the stars -- has gotten very concerned of late about being able to navigate his way back from places. She also updates Richard on Gillian and her visit to Tommy's school. She says there's a hearing the following month and adds that it's a difficult process because they can't talk about Richard killing the men at Gillian's house before running away. She tells Richard she doesn't "want to do all this by myself," but wonders how she can trust him. Julia and Tommy head back to their house and Richard comes with them. Tommy holds his hand as they walk.Nucky shows up at Sally's the next morning and Meyer tells him that Lucky is out. Nucky says that Sally has his instructions and will be overseeing his part of the deal in Florida.Daughter comes to Chalky's office at his request. He says he wanted to see her the night before but she ran off after the show. He tells her that she thinks she's Ma Rainey and he if wanted her, he'd hire her. He belittles her role. He doesn't like the blues song she sang, saying that 10 people got up and left. She says she wants to leave. Chalky has some choice words about Dr. Narcisse, but she tells him to take those issues up with him. Daughter starts to leave but tells Chalky she saw him watching her while she sang and says, "I know exactly what you are." Chalky stops her from leaving, kisses her hard and they wind up having sex.

Directed by Allen Coulter  

Starring Steve Buscemi, Kelly Macdonald, Michael Shannon, Shea Whigham, Michael Stuhlbarg, more...

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