Why Did Russell Take Frank's Glasses? | The Irishman Explained

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2m Jul 20, 2021

Martin Scorsese’s star studded The Irishman follows Robert De Niro’s hitman Frank Sheeran and his life working under Teamsters union president Jimmy Hoffa, played by Al Pacino, whilst simultaneously working under his mentor, the mob boss Russell Bufalino played by Joe Pesci.

The job of killing Hoffa is given to Frank Sheeran, one of the many reasons being that he’s one of the few men who can get close enough to Hoffa to taken him out, seeing as though the two are so close.

When Russell Bufalino tells Frank what it is, you can see that the usually stoic and hard Sheeran is close to breaking, there’s a hint of tears but he holds them back. Bufalino knows how close Sheeran is to Hoffa, he knows what effect this is having, but the only other option would be to send both Hoffa and Sheeran to Australia.

After the diner scene where Russell tells Frank he’ll be the one to kill Hoffa, there are no words spoken in the film throughout Frank boarding the plane, landing in Detroit, driving to the house where the hit is about to be carried out, until he meets and greets Sally Buggs. The only words spoken is a short simple instruction given by Russell to Frank while the duo are sitting in their car next to the plane. Frank parks up, Russell takes a look at him and says “gimmie your glasses” and Frank obliges without question, takes a final look at Russell, and gets out of the car to proceed with his mission.

So why exactly did Russell take Frank’s glasses? It’s not something that’s ever referenced again, aside from when Frank returns from the hit, and incomplete silence is handed back the glasses by his boss. No explanation is ever given for this slightly unorthodox scene, so lets take a look at it and see if we can come up with a reason.

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CineRanter - A couch potato's insignificant rage on modern film. I review movies, discuss film theories and explanations, and other cinema-related stuff. Sometimes I branch out to other mediums like books and comics.


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Taraful Crescut • 2021

6 days ago