Sunday, April 13, 2008

Street Kings

Movie name: Street Kings
Year of release: 2008
Director: David Ayer
Stars: Keanu Reeves, Forest Whitaker, Hugh Laurie, Chris Evans, Naomie Harris, Jay Mohr, John Corbett, Terry Crews, Common, Amaury Nolasco, Martha Higareda
Genre: Crime, Thriller, Drama
Score out of ten (whole numbers only): 5

Following "Harsh Times", David Ayer returns to the directing chair, handling a story of the wonderful James Ellroy (who is responsible for the books "LA Confidential" and "The Black Dahlia" to name a few). David Ayer became well known for writing "Training Day" which garnered a second Oscar for Denzel Washington. This film doesn't stray too far, again focusing on police corruption in LA, but though Ayer has a great cast to work with, this film feels like a story that has been told before (and with better results). Though this isn't a bad film, the results never stray of mediocre, mostly because the director doesn't have the bite to really take it and make it into something indelible. The film could use a director like Martin Scorsese or even Steven Soderbergh, who would make this story their own. The actors walk a fine line between contention and overacting. Keanu Reeves does a good job, but the real downfalls are the wooden acting of Chris Evans and the overacting of Forest Whitaker (sometimes less is more, and not all characters can be like Idi Amin, for which he won the Oscar in "Last King of Scotland"). All and all this film delivers, but could've reached heights that otherwise are just too far away.