So last Friday was my birthday and as part of my celebrations I went to go and see Ruben Fliescher’s new movie, Gangster Squad. Boasting an all star cast that includes Ryan Gosling, Emma Stone, Josh Brolin and Sean Penn there was much to get excited about for this mob movie. It seems the critics didn’t get what they wanted but in my opinion they were looking for the wrong things.
The story line is very similar to The Untouchables something which probably didn’t work in the movies favour because it reminds the audience of one of the all-time greats. This is the films biggest problem, I think reviewers got the impression Gangster Squad was attempting to be the next Untouchables, they were expecting an epic crime opus on that kind of level. What they got was something completely different, and I think Fleischer has actually hit the nail on the head.
Everyone knows its near impossible to meet the quality of some the entries into the cops-chasing-mobster genre that Gangster Squad doesn’t even attempt to compete with them and in doing so comes out a much better movie than it would have had it tried be one of those movies. It is instead happy to give the audience some pure wish fulfilment. Character’s are hardly built upon at all, what we’re worried about here is guns, girls and clinical coolness, most of which is delivered to us on a silver platter by the effortlessly cool Ryan Gosling. It would be an injustice for me not to mention how much Emma Stone was a highlight particularly when in full-on Jessica Rabbit mode as pictured above. All the cast seem to have a ball here, all completely happy to be charicatures rather than fully fleshed characters. No matter what the critics say this movie is one of the most entertaining I’ve seen in a long while and it deserves more credit than it has got.