Saturday, February 8, 2014

Gangster Squad

gangster squad by ruben fleischer

I recently saw Gangster Squad, a 2013 action crime flick by former creative copywriter and Zombieland maker Ruben Fleischer. It's weird that this movie somehow slipped through my fingers because I A) love funky gangster movies, B) idolize pretty boy Ryan Gosling, and C) can definitely appreciate myself a little Emma Stone. So yeah, it was long overdue that I checked out Gangster Squad.

Former boxer Mickey Cohen (Sean Penn) is an ambitious and ruthless L.A. gangster plotting to run the entire West Coast. War veteran and LAPD Sergeant John O'Mara (Josh Brolin) appears to be the only guy who refuses to let that happen. LAPD Chief Bill Parker (a very raspy Nick Nolte) soon takes notices, and tasks him to start a guerilla war against Cohen. When Sergeant Jerry Wooters (Ryan Gosling) decides to join O'Mara's rag tag crew, their efforts become more strategic. Still, Wooters' affair with Cohen's "etiquette coach" Grace Faraday (Emma Stone) only further complicates things.  

It's grim, it's pretty. And it's always entertaining to watch a star cast at work. The product is nothing earth-shattering, but Sean Penn's performance and some explosive action make for a more than enjoyable 113-minute gangster experience.

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