Broken City

For my initial impressions of Broken City, I obviously can only look at the trailer. Lot of high energy music, camera flash noises, very exciting. Sexy scandals! Government cover ups! Black mail! Potential boredom!

To be honest, the strange flashing parts near the end of the trailer gave me a bit of a headache. Thankfully, as we all know, trailer music never makes the actual movie. Presumably there wont be awkward shutter noises either.

Here is the most actiony shot of the movie I could find on the internet. Consider it an action epilogue.

Billy Taggart (Mark Wahlberg) has done a bad bad thing. He killed a man, multiple shots. He claims he was defending himself, the other man had a gun. He was just a cop at the wrong place at the right time. The town claims it was cold blooded murder, but they had no real evidence. He was found innocent, but the public outcry was so strong, and new evidence was covered up, so the police chief (Jeffrey Wright) and mayor (Russell Crowe) had to let him go anyways.

Well, seven years later, he is a PI with an office and an assistant (Alona Tal) and a huge debt! Well, the mayor said he would remember his name, and he gives him an offer. $50,000.00 to tail his wife (Catherine Zeta-Jones), take pictures of who she is sleeping with, and find out the name of the man. Half now, half later. He also needs it quickly, because the election is a few days away, and the new guy (Barry Pepper) is giving him a lot of crap.

But why would the mayor care so much about the affair this close to an election? There has to be more important things afoot, damn it. Also featuring Kyle Chandler as the campaign manager for the new guy, and Natalie Martinez as the long term girlfriend of Billy.

“Women be cheatinnnnnnnnnnn” – Crowe

Don’t watch the trailer, don’t watch the trailer, don’t watch the trailer? You saw the trailer? Don’t watch the movie. No point.

Turns out the trailer gives a lot of it away, in terms of how the movie is going to end. It is sparse on the actual plot details and many of the characters, but outside of that, the jig is up. When the movie ended, I was mad. Why would they do that, given the trailer?

I am supposed to judge a movie on its own, but I feel like if the trailer gives you too much information, and is plastered everywhere, it should be included if it does something so egregious. I was disgusted and appalled. Heck, after the movie I found myself more confused because the trailer had scenes that were not in the movie. I had to go back and watch it to make sure. They were there, but the context was so out of place, it was pointless.

Yes, I am saying the trailer both gave too much away, and created scenes that just were not true. It can do both.

I didn’t hate the acting from Marky Mark either. Zeta-Jones felt wasted in the movie, Crowe looked weird with that skin tone/hair.

However, a lot of the plot bugged me. The actions of the characters confused me. I don’t think they explained why he was just invited into a murder scene by someone completely random. Why people let him stick around. I had no idea what was happening in the plot, and yet the whole time I felt like I knew the ending. That is a strange way to see a movie.

Confusion is not a substitute for suspense, movie makers.

1 out of 4.

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