Saturday, January 12, 2013

Gangster Squad (2013): Review

This weekend I went to see Gangster Squad and I was not disappointed in what I saw.  I really liked this movie and it was a joy to watch.  The Gangster Squad is set in 1949 Los Angeles and follows Sargent John O'Mara, played by Josh Brolin, and Sargent Jerry Wooters, played by Ryan Gosling, as they try and take down Crime Boss Mickey Cohen, played by Sean Penn.
Gangster Squad has what I love about shoot-um-up movies, lots of intense stand offs and lots of gun slinging. At times it was a bit caricatured but this added to the old world charm of the entire movie.  It was fun to watch the interactions of the police officers with each other and how the criminal network was trying to come out on top.  It was refreshing, after seeing all of the modern day criminal movies which use all of the most up to date technology, to see the foot on the pavement method utilized in the Gangster Squad.
All of the actors were fantastic in this movie, Sean Penn plays a great crime boss and ex-boxer.  I believed that he would act violently to get and maintain his criminal stronghold.  Josh Brolin is the dedicated police officer, who believes in doing what he needs to for justice.  As it was several years after the war, he is still struggling to deal with being back at home and how to balance out his desire to see Mickey taken down and to be there for his wife.  Ryan Gosling, once again, is very charming and plays the young gun well.  I believe that he would be able to charm Grace Faraday, played by Emma Stone, while hanging around the outskirts of the criminal underground.
As I watched this movie, I was drawn into the scenery and the environment of late 40's.  It seemed to fit into what I picture in my head of Los Angeles during this time, with the old world glamour and social interplay.  Although the plot was a bit simplistic and pretty predictable, I was drawn in for throughout the entire experience.

My Rating: 3-


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