Summary: 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.
Australian Cinema Release Date: 7th March, 2013
Australian DVD Release Date: TBA
Director: Allen Hughes
Screenwriter: Brian Tucker
Cast: Sharon Anglea (Amber (voice), (Michael Beach (Tony Jansen), Justin Chambers (Ryan), Kyle Chandler (Paul Andrews), Ambyr Childers (Mary), Russell Crowe (Mayor Hostetler), Griffin Dunne (Sam Lancaster), , Shawn Elliott (Raul Barea), Frank Forunato (Body Man Kevin), James M. Jenkins (Jimmy (voice)), Chance Kelly (Murdock), Natalie Martinez (Natalie Barrow), Barry Pepper (Jack Valliant), Reynaldo Piniella (Bolton Teen Alex), William Ragsdale (Mr. Davies), James Ransone (Todd Lancaster), Ric Reitz (Mitch Rappaport), Alona Tal (Katy Bradshaw), Britney Theriot (Valerie), Luis Tolentino (Mikey Tavarez), Mark Wahlberg (Billy Taggart), Jeffrey Wright (Carl Fairbanks), Catherine Zeta-Jones (Cathleen Hostetler)
Runtime: 109 mins
Dave Griffiths’s ‘Broken City’ Review:
While they might not be everybody’s cup of tea, sometimes it is nice to sit back and enjoy a good story that centres around political espionage and fraud. While ‘Broken City’ promises to be this years ‘Arbitrage’ it isn’t quite up to scratch.
‘Broken City’ begins with New York Police Department Detective Billy Taggert (Mark Wahlberg – ‘Ted’, ‘Contraband’) being found not guilty after he guns down a rape suspect, the ‘not guilty’ verdict is largely hated by the population who believes that Taggert should be charged with murder. While Police Commissioner Carl Fairbanks (Jeffrey Wright – ‘A Single Shot’, ‘The Inevitable Defeat Of Mister And Pete’) decides to stand Taggert down he finds a fan in Mayor Hostetler (Russell Crowe – ‘Les Miserables’, ‘The Man With The Iron Fists’) who congratulates him on his work.
Time passes and now Taggert is dating actress Natalie Barrow (Natalie Martinez – ‘End Of Watch’, ‘The Baytown Outlaws’) who is the rape victim’s sister and he is running a Private Investigation company with the help of his assistant Katy Bradshaw (Alona Tal – ‘Powers’ TV’S ‘Cult’). With the company running at a loss Taggert jumps at the opportunity when Mayor Hostetler hires him to investigate his wife, Cathleen (Catherine Zeta-Jones – ‘Side Effects’, ‘Playing For Keeps’). But while Taggert believes it is a simple case of Cathleen is having an affair with Paul Andrews (Kyle Chandler – ‘Zero Dark Thirty’, ‘Argo’) he soon finds himself engulfed by a deadly game of politics and corruption.
While director Allen Hughes (‘The Book Of Eli’, ‘New York I Love You’) has the sense to make sure that this film doesn’t become your stock standard action film just because one of the supposed modern day action stars, Mark Wahlberg, is the leading man, you can’t help but feel that Wahlberg’s presence does indeed taint the film. Inside ‘Broken City’ is a great story waiting to come out but it is like Hughes knows that Wahlberg will be ripped to shreds if it comes down to an acting duel between himself and Crowe so instead he chooses to dumb the script, the result is a film that offers a little bit of suspense but nowhere near as much as it needed.
The cast are also badly let down by the weakened screenplay. Catherine Zeta-Jones and Kyle Chandler are dangerously underused while Jeffrey Wright is horribly miscast as the Police Commissioner, it is a strange casting decision and one that leaves an actor in a role that he certainly isn’t believable in. Also distracting is Crowe’s bad wig and tan which is too much of a distraction not to be noticed.
‘Broken City’ does offer up the occasional twist and turn but sadly the script is a lot tamer than it should be.
Other Subculture Media Reviews of ‘Broken City′: Check Episode #23 (available 8th March) of our The Good The Bad The Ugly Podcast for a more in-depth review of ‘Broken City’. Please also check Dave Griffiths’s review of ‘Broken City’ that is available on the Helium Entertainment Channel.