A young and impatient stockbroker is willing to do anything to get to the top, including trading on illegal inside information taken through a ruthless and greedy corporate raider who takes the youth under his wing.
It's 1949 Los Angeles, and gangster Mickey Cohen has moved in, with the intention of controlling all criminal activity in the city. He has bought local judges and police, and no one is willing to cross him or testify against him. Everyone except Seargant John O'Mara, a former World War II soldier, whose goal is to settle with his family in a peaceful Los Angeles. Police Chief William Parker decides to form a special unit whose mission is to take down Cohen, and chooses O'Mara to lead the unit. O'Mara chooses 4 cops and asks another cop and vet, Jerry Wooters to join him but Wooters is not interested. But when he witnesses the murder of a young boy by Cohen's people, he joins them, and they decide to take apart Cohen's organization. Cohen wonders if a rival is going after him, but eventually he realizes it's the cops. Written by
Officer Darryl Gates (Josh Pence), Chief Parker's driver, went on to become the Chief of the LAPD himself. His headquarters, Parker Center, was named for his former boss. See more »
The singer in Slapsy Maxie's is singing into the top of the RCA 77-DX ribbon microphone. This type of microphone is only sensitive to sound coming from the sides. See more »
Sgt. John O'Mara:
Every man carries a badge. Some symbol of his allegiance. His were the scars of a boxer who'd used his fists to climb the social ladder of the mob. A Jew who'd gained the respect of wops through a homicidal lust. He'd sworn an oath of violence. And his master? His own insatiable will to power. He wanted to own this town. His name was Mickey Cohen.
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An all-round great flick, one which I highly recommend you go see.
Review originally posted on InspirationRation.com - 'Gangster Squad' tells the story of a small team of Los Angeles cops who take on the task of waging war against the swiftly growing East Coast Mafia presence in their city. Set in 1949 LA, this war is fought with tommy guns, fedoras, and style.
Sean Penn plays Mickey Cohen, a ruthless mob-boss with great ambitions. He has LA in his grasp. Hundreds of politicians, judges and cops are in his pocket. Still he wants more, and he is poised to take over all off- track betting revenue in the western part of the USA. Sgt. John O'Mara (played by Josh Brolin) receives permission to go after him, but he'll have to go outside the law. He gets together a ragtag team of honest cops, and starts a war.
The acting is great in 'Gangster Squad'. Especially Sean Penn as Mickey Cohen is impressive; it is evident that he had fun playing such a dynamic and extremely volatile character. But Josh Brolin, Emma Stone and the supporting cast also truly hold their own here. It is not just the acting, but also the way the characters are written that really adds to the movie. As stated, the group of cops is pretty diverse, and each character has its own personality and quirks to play with. This in turn also allows for some good humour here and there. The only odd character one out in my opinion was Ryan Gosling's character, whom I didn't really 'get'.
The film features some amazing directing; Interesting and stylistic, with some really great and creative camera shots. Dynamic camera-angle switches, indoor crane shots, long semi-complicated takes, and most memorable to me a close-up dolly zoom shot mid-punch in the middle of a fighting scene. A really cool effect.
'Gangster Squad' features plenty of impressive action. There are good era-specific gun-and fist-fights, but there is also some more extreme dual tommygun-wielding, stick-grenade hot potato play action going on. Both really nicely done and just plain entertaining. There is a car chase which I would deem uncharacteristically over the top ridiculous, but this is addressed in the plot as well, so I'll let it slide. All the action (as well as the rest of the movie) is accompanied by good music, not great, but satisfactory.
As always with a period movie, I have to take a moment to address the impressive way in which they managed to portray 1949 Los Angeles. The empty skyline in the background, streets filled with old-timer cars, and the classic sign when Hollywood was still Hollywoodland.
All combined 'Gangster Squad' is just an all-round great flick, one which I highly recommend you go see. The acting, directing, action, and style of the film are all tremendous. It never bores, but constantly entertains. And if that doesn't convince you, it has Emma friggin' Stone in it, so what more do you want? Go watch this! - Review originally posted on InspirationRation.com
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