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Street Kings
5 reviews

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Movie Details

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Directed By
David Ayer

Written By:
James Ellroy, Kurt Wimmer, Jamie Moss, Jamie Moss

Keanu Reeves, Hugh Laurie, Forest Whitaker, Chris Evans, Amaury Nolasco, Terry Crews, Common, Naomie Harris, Jay Mohr, Cedric the Entertainer, Martha Higareda, Patrick Gallagher, Kate Clarke, Kenneth Choi, Garret Sato, Michael Monks, Aaron MacPherson, Geoffrey Gould, Kevin Benton, Joanne Chew, Angela Sun, Kirstin Pierce, Siobhan Parisi, Cle Shaheed Sloan, Kami Jones, Dennis Nusbaum, Amy Dudgeon

Street Kings (2008)
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Movie Review by Chris
October 2nd, 2008

'Street Kings' directed by David Ayer, is a typical stereotype of every other police thriller made. It doesnt really make a difference that David Ayer has had a military background and knows a thing or two about violence or weapons, but maybe he shouldve leaned towards something more military instructed. Written by James Ellroy, based on his own novel, this is one of those films where the script is one of the major problems since this is written by a man who wrote the novel the film is based off. 'Street Kings' has a lot of potential behind it, it couldve succeeded as a new 'Training Day' or even couldve had as much respect as that film had, but the thing is everything in the plot or even the character stories copy off other films. So I do believe 'Street Kings' is at times an awesome and interesting film, but it had so much more potential then what its at.

Its almost laughable when we see Keanu Reeves, mostly known as Neo, return to play a serious role as a tough cop. Its actually almost laughable when they said Keanu Reeves was going to return in movies. Actually though, it seems the stereotypical character of Wudlow does him some good and he might of put some heart into this role, its not his fault the writer couldnt get things right. Tom is sort of an alcoholic whom everybody seems to have that hate for on the force. Hes violent and supposedly uncontrollable, and he seems to love attention for defeating the baddies on his own. Havent we seen him before, well just sit back and watch all the other police thrillers to ever be released. As we find out late in the film, his wife had died, I am not going to tell you how but it doesnt surprise us one bit when we see him with his new "lover". Keanu Reeves is really lacking in his filmography, his last movie before this was actually 'The Lake House', which now I understand why he's losing roles.

Forest Whitaker has a very interesting and awesome role here as Captain Jack Wander, who by the end gets much more involved in the plot then we originally believed he would be. Jack thinks that Tom is special because he can do something with no emotion and he gets it done with no hesitation, which is a good thing to Jack. So everytime Tom gets into trouble, here come Jack to save the day, though hes never write and must lie to save Tom, it shows hes a good friend. But yeah, Forest is an amazing actor who couldve chosen a more complex role then this, but its his taste and he seems to have a thing for this movie.

James Ellroy wrote a novel of the same name, and I read up on some reviews about it and it's supposed to be pretty good. So a man named David Ayer comes along and wants to make a movie, James volunteers to write the script and instantly everything turns to hell. I cant hate this movie for the dialogue, because James took the time to write the script and tried a little bit, but its a major downfall for the end movie. The film has an emotional side to it, but the barrier is never broken so that we see this emotional side. We get to see the boundaries of it and all but it shouldve been taken a little bit seriously instead of just tossing the elements in there like it seems they were. Also, the movie is extremely predictable, which is a really bad thing. Right from the beginning I saw that everything was going to go wrong and someone was going to get screwed over, and what happens, everything goes wrong and everyone gets screwed over.

Since 'Street Kings' is a modern day thriller, the grittiness and violence is one of the biggest things this movie has to offer. It captures some of the darker elements of haven to take control of anger or even having to use excessive force as a police officer, but I cant help but think that Ive seen it all before. Since David is an ex military man, the movie attempts to make a more realistic approach, so the violence is there but it seems more tweaked for reality then viewing pleasure. Also, some of the dialogue and even moves that the officers make are a little fictional and dont focus to strongly on reality. David Ayer had a chance to do so much more with it and yet again he just throws it out there.

'Street Kings' is violent and gritty, but the been there done that style and predictable plot drove me nuts. Its a good movie, but it has some flaws to it.

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