An undercover cop, disillusioned by the death of his wife, is implicated in the murder of an officer and must struggle to clear himself.An undercover cop, disillusioned by the death of his wife, is implicated in the murder of an officer and must struggle to clear himself.An undercover cop, disillusioned by the death of his wife, is implicated in the murder of an officer and must struggle to clear himself.
One thing that should immediately stand out to you is the size and profile of the cast, which is not short on stars. However, underneath the sea of recognizable faces is a gripping thriller with enough gunfire and blood to satisfy most fans of the action genre, as well as a compelling story to keep the crime buffs interested. We follow Reeves' Tom Ludlow, a brutal and unforgiving LAPD detective, as he works the streets of Los Angeles without rules and uses whatever force is necessary to get the job done. However, when he is implicated in a crime, he must put all he knows behind him to save his life and career.
Keanu Reeves...I can't think of many actors who have played more characters that define the word 'badass' (maybe Mark Wahlberg). So what if his abilities are limited to being dark, moody, and the definition of brooding intensity? He's GOOD at it! He can play the most repulsive guy (like he does in this movie as well as Constantine), yet still come off as likable, which is why I'll finally admit that I like the guy.
The massive supporting cast is headlined by Oscar winner Forest Whitaker, and everyone's favorite snarky doctor, Hugh Laurie. While Whitaker does his usual theatrical/over the top act, it really fits with his character and doesn't detract from the film. Laurie is also great in a scene stealing role as the Captain after Ludlow's badge. Chris Evans is forgettable, but not horrible. Cameos from "The Moniker Team", as I like to call it, are welcome additions as well. This team consists of Common, The Game, and Cedric the Entertainer. Common's cameo as an ice cold villain is memorable and almost scary. I loved him. Amaury Nolasco annoyed me once again, while seeing John Corbett in a movie was kind of weird, considering that he 'retired' a few years ago.
The mood and atmosphere of Street Kings is where it gets its title. It really felt like a constant power struggle within the movie not only between the characters, but with Reeves' character as well. His character's light and dark sides both come out in the film, but the real twist is which side comes out on top in the end. The film has several twists and turns, including a somewhat predictable revelation as to who the main bad guy is, but I found that I was never bored. It is well paced and definitely entertains with some dark and dry humor here and there.
With Street Kings, you've got a thriller that doesn't bring a lot of new things to the table in the 'dirty cop movie', but instead has a strong foundation in its cast and director (David Ayer, the man behind other dirty cop stories such as Training Day and Harsh Times), which shows on screen. It's one of the better thrillers this year, and is worth a look if you're into the genre.
- Nov 28, 2008