a Movie That Makes Me
Want To Gouge Out My Eyes With My Pen
Wrt. David Ayer (adapted from the story by James Ellroy)
Dir. Ron Shelton
Str. Kurt Russell, Jim Cody Williams, Ving Rhames, Brendan
Opens February 21st
if L.A. Confidential and Training Day met
one afternoon, fell in love, and tried to make a baby; but
they used drugs not approved by the FDA for the labor pains
and out popped Dark Blue. It's kind of a horrific, idiot,
mutant flipper-baby of a movie, painful to watch and evoking
nothing but pity from all that are forced to stare into
its awful grotesqueness.
There are piles of violence and intrigue, and gun fights,
not to mention the slowest car chase in the history of film,
but still Dark Blue is excruciatingly boring to watch. And
it was probably excruciating to be in as well. On every
actor's face is a queer, befuddled look bordering on amazement--
as though they can't believe the words which have pour out
of their mouths, like so much rancorous bile; on top of
that it feels as though everyone is speaking their own individual
language, so that there is no sense of communication, or
even comprehension as one character speaks to another. It's
like everyone is speaking to cardboard cutouts of everyone
else. Even the fabulous Brendan Gleeson looks lost, and
carries a grimace throughout the movie as if his role, itself,
smells of sour cheese.
This movie takes cliché to a whole new, amazing level.
And we are talking cliché folded in with heavy symbolism
and deep meaning all forced down the throat like a bulimics
index finger. Take, for example, one scene in which a group
of corrupt white officers talk about a raid on a black neighborhood
that's about to take place "If you knock one of the
fucks down... keep them down." And then we immediately
cut to Ving Rhames dressed in his full officer's uniform
standing at the pulpit in church giving a speech that literally
begins with "I remember my first day on the job."
Oh! The irony
. It burns! Or Kurt Russell drinking
his Royal Crown out of Dixie cups, because he's just THAT
trashy. I'm not completely sure what we're supposed to learn
from this movie. Cops are corrupt? But, didn't we already
The fact that the story was written by James Ellroy and
the pseudo-Chinatown music towards the end only make you
yearn for something better, and force you realize how truly
awful this movie is. It's like asking for Crème Brule
and getting a bowl of warm half-n-half instead.
Dark Blue wins as the first movie of the year to get a-half-a-hipster.
Way to go. It should be very proud. If this movie makes
it in theatres longer than Swept Away (hailed by critics
nationwide as last years worst movie) then truly there is
injustice in the world - I mean, at least Madonna is still
a little hot.