Noir in narrative if not aesthetic, Allen Hughes’s thriller trots out several familiar genre components: Wahlberg’s character is essentially a blue-collar Sam Spade, complete with spunky Girl Friday (Alona Tal), while the plot contains echoes of Chinatown. (There’s also an alcohol-fueled, dark-night-of-the-soul sequence that’s one saxophone solo away from unintentional parody.) Broken City never asks its gumshoe to repent for the blood on his own hands, and the anticorruption – but pro-vigilantism – ethics here are especially murky. While the film treats a secret gay romance with sensitivity, it also includes a scene in which Wahlberg righteously rails against the “metrosexual” friends of his girlfriend. What, are Village hipster artists not included in the 99 percent?
Broken City details
Length: 109 minutes
Country of origin: USA
Year of production: 2012
Classification: MA15+ - Under 15s must be accompanied by parent
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