Monday, October 3, 2011

L.A. Confidential

Crime movies are always the best, especially if they're set in Los Angeles. It's always a thrill to see the police solve a case, but what if the police were hiding something behind the badge?

Curtis Hanson's L.A. Confidential provides a great glimpse of police corruption. We commonly see in other movies cops acting above the law, but L.A. Confidential shows that it isn't one or two cops; it's almost the whole damn department! And Hanson makes sure that he doesn't cram that fact down our throats but rather acknowledges it periodically.

The cast is just to die for. Russell Crowe channels his inner Bogart by saying more with his expressions than with his words and actions. Guy Pearce is the straight-laced cop who tries to clean up the department (and makes more than a few enemies), but he gets tempted more than once to switch over. Kevin Spacey arrests celebrities for his own fame and to provide material for Danny DeVito, but starts to feel guilty for what he's doing. Kim Basinger brings out the shreds of humanity in Crowe. All in all, they play their parts wonderfully.

L.A. Confidential is one of the best neo-noirs out there. It captures the 1950's so perfectly, it feels like it's from the 1950's. Each twist and turn presented is always revealing and shocking. It has to be one of the best movies from the 1990's.

My Rating: *****


  1. Can't believe I haven't seen LA Confidential yet. I kind of forgot about it. Sounds like I need to, though.

  2. One of my favorite movie of all time. Love the atmosphere in this film. You could swear it was made in the 60's instead of 1997.

  3. Yeah, this movie is really good. I shall have to hunt it down so I can buy it!

  4. Love everything about this movie, a damn-near flawless piece of filmmaking. If you've read the book (the narrative of which spans several years), it makes you appreciate how hard it would've been to adapt it into a film.

    A justly-won Oscar for Best Screenplay (would've been nice to see Pearce or Crowe in there for Supp. Actor). Great write-up.

  5. This is on my top 5 favorite films list right next to Rebecca and The Philadelphia Story! The acting was fantastic (Kevin Spacey is my favorite working actor today) His talent is immeasurable! The script was the BEST of the decade then as you mentioned it was set in Hollywood during a fascinating time.

    Thanks for your review of a fantastic film. A must see for anyone who loves great acting, scripts and crime dramas.

  6. L.A. Confidential was sadly over-shadowed by Titanic. It's a great movie with an incredible cast. I don't think Kevin Spacey and Russel Crowe have appeared in a movie together since, but this was a good one. I thought that the twist in the end was well put together and didn't feel cheap at all. A testament to the movies success.

  7. Kevin Spacey's last scene still haunts me, Basinger was never better, and Crowe and'd never know they weren't American actors—this is the one that put them on the map. And I love Jerry Goldsmith's score


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