- Allen Hughes,
- Brian Tucker,
- Mark Wahlberg, Russell Crowe, Catherine Zeta-Jones, Jeffrey Wright, Barry Pepper, Alona Tal, Natalie Martinez,
- In a broken city rife with injustice, ex-cop Billy Taggart (Mark Wahlberg) seeks redemption and revenge after being double-crossed and then framed by its most powerful figure, the mayor (Russell Crowe). Billy's relentless pursuit of justice, matched only by his streetwise toughness, makes him an unstoppable force - and the mayor's worst nightmare.
It's pretty trashy and sometimes stupid. But there was never a moment when I wasn't entertained on one level or another.
Allen Hughes may suggest an air of pretty menace, but he does little to make the sequence work as a legible genre scene.
Nothing clicks, nothing resonates, everything's broken.
It tries to be a moody thriller, but cliched dialogue and too many coincidences make for a predictable and hackneyed film.
If nothing else, Broken City manages to pull off a difficult feat: It's too convoluted to follow and simultaneously too simplistic to be believed.
The movie's curious capacity for self-erasure makes it a tough one to write about; less than 24 hours later, I recall it with all the clarity of something I half-watched on a plane with a hangover in 1996.
If this ‘power corrupts’ potboiler had been made in the 1990s — with, say, Andy Garcia, Gene Hackman and Kim Basinger — it would already have felt old-fashioned. Forget it, Jake, it’s no "Chinatown."
There are filmmakers who are able to weave social commentary through the arena of big budget entertainment, without having it come across as lopsided or boring; Allen Hughes, it turns out, is not one of these filmmakers.
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