Broken City (2013)
“Neither compelling nor entertaining, Broken City is unprecedented as the first Action-Drama to contain no action nor drama – broken is right.”
GRADE: 2/5 Stars
by Richard Rey
Yes, it IS that bad. Allow me to unabashedly ream this forefront nominee for Worst Picture of the Year (Razzi). Readers beware: this is going to get I-wouldn’t-touch-that-broad-with-a-ten-foot-pole ugly. Broken City is a convoluted, reprehensible wannabe action-drama that follows William James Taggert (Mark Wahlberg) – a faux-pas detective on trial for the murder of a black hoodlum. He wins the trial but loses his badge to Mayor Hostetler (Russell Crowe) and the Chief of Police (Jeffrey Wright).
Seven years elapse and it is here we pick up the (non)action with the ex-cop antihero whose vigilante actions never seem to cause an ounce of repercussion whatsoever. The Mayor hires him to track his unfaithful wife, played by the pleasant-to-the-eye and oh so ever washed-up Catherine Zeta Jones.
From there it’s a downward spiral filled with twists and turns that cause motion picture sickness brought about by an unconcerned, drab script that will keep you on the edge of your seat –deliberating a dash for the nearest exit. I openly grimaced and guffawed at the laughable dialogue’s disconcerting exposition: ‘My heart is pounding Billy’, ‘You promised me Billy, I’m hurt from this’, ‘You better Nick, you just better’ and my personal favorite: ‘You’ll get your money in Nevuary.’
This bumpy ride through the Broken City of plot-holes (mmhmm) is a poorly constructed waste of cinema. It is the reason audiences don’t go to the theater anymore. It is a two-hour session of Where’s Waldo. It diminishes the value of cinema everywhere. It calls the audience stupid. It’s a fat side helping of feces. And it makes babies cry. It masters nothing and enslaves us all. I can’t say enough bad things about this film – so I won’t. Don’t see it, don’t be misled by its trailers, don’t go near it.
Director: Allen Hughes
Poorly Acted By: Mark Wahlberg, Russell Crowe, Catherine Zeta-Jones (Kyle Chandler excluded)
Written (on the back of a napkin) By: Brian Tucker
MPAA: Rated R for pervasive language, some sexual content and violence
Runtime: 104 minutes (that you’ll never get back)
Genre: Action, Drama, Crime
*Prediction: Allen Hughes, Brian Tucker, and the editor of this film will not work on another major motion picture for years to come, if ever.