This evening I went to see Gangster Squad with a friend. I went into this movie with the thoughts that it would be a decent film. I am a fan of Ryan Gosling and Emma Stone so I knew I would at least enjoy the scenes with them in it. Also on a side note.. There was a couple that brought four small children to this film. This is not appropriate for children by any means. A man gets ripped in half in one of the first scenes. People, please think sensibly!
Anywho, If you haven’t seen the trailer for this film or read anything about it, I’ll clue you in on the gist of this film. It’s set in 1949 in Los Angeles, California. Mickey Cohen, played by Sean Penn, is a mobster who has the entire city under his control. John O’Mara, played by Josh Brolin, and Jerry Wooters, played by Ryan Gosling, recruit a squad to take down this gangster and redeem their city.
After seeing this film, I have to say that my original thoughts were true. I love the 40s so that played in my favor, but I was left with an empty feel. It just felt like another big budget, ‘check out how many explosions we can have’, Hollywood movie to me. Penn did a good job as the “villain”, but it didn’t give me the thrill of say Zachary Quinto as Sylar or Phillip Seymour Hoffman in MI3.
There were quite a few highlights to this film though. Ryan Gosling and Emma Stone had excellent. There is always passion in their performances, but when they get together it’s a beautiful thing. There was also a very sweet opening shot of Penn boxing. It was an almost silhouette shot with a super shallow depth of field so both the film nerd and the photographer in me was super excited.
Overall, I’d have to give this film a 6.5/10. I know this is so low because I am not really a fan of violent films. If you either like shoot ‘em up style movies or what to see Ryan Gosling smooth talk and you don’t mind spending $10 to do so, I would recommend this movie.