7 January 2013 10:07 AM, PST | Thompson on Hollywood | See recent Thompson on Hollywood news »

Ruben Fleischer, director of "Zombieland," "30 Minutes or Less" and now "Gangster Squad," is facing some less-than-stellar early reviews for his would-be-noir thriller about the Lapd vs. gangster Mickey Cohen in 1940s Los Angeles, based on Paul Lieberman's book of the same name. Turns out it reads more like a stock standard actioneer with plenty of violence, slick one-liners and one-dimensional characters. With the ensemble cast of Sean Penn, Josh Brolin, Ryan Gosling, Emma Stone, Mireille Enos, Michael Pena, Giovanni Ribisi and Nick Nolte, we had hoped for more. Reshoots were required after the July 2012 movie theater shootings in Aurora, Colorado. An early trailer for "Gangster Squad" also featured a sensationalized shooting scene in a theater. "Gangster Squad" arrives January 11. THR: "Unfortunately, all the characters are hardly more dimensional than caricatures, identifiable by one main trait and barely »


- Sophia Savage

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