Mark Wahlberg is back to play good cop bad cop, in a movie centred around politics, betrayal, money and murder. He plays Billy Taggart who can take the law into his own hands (most definitely) and is passionate about doing the right thing, even if it is in the wrong way.
The broken city in question is NYC and Russell Crowe plays the current Mayor, Nicholas Hostetler in this thrilling drama. With elections right around the corner the plot is based on the few days leading to the election and how the dirty game of politics can leave no stone unturned when it comes to winning.
The movie opens up with a little bit of history on BIlly Taggart (Mark Wahlberg) timed 7 years prior to present day, and a trial where Billy is acquitted of murder charges on account of self-defence. Post the trial, the Mayor (Russell Crowe) asks Billy to leave his cop duties. Billy's life is now transformed to one of a private detective and he lives on a few small contracts and bad debts.
The scene unfolds 7 years later and the Mayor returns with a job for Billy that will pay him a handsome sum. Also, the timing is good to note, it's a few days before the big election. The Mayor is facing stiff competition from Jack Valliant, the opponent.
Billy's job for the Mayor is simple and easy. Find out who the Mayor's wife is having an affair with. The wife being Catherine Zeta-Jones.
Watch the trailer here
The movie is fast paced and the story constantly unfolds. There surely is a dark secret to be revealed and a lot of twists along the way. The good people turn bad and the so-called bad ones have seemingly good intentions. You suddenly start wondering who is playing whom and why was BIlly specifically hired for this job by the Mayor?
With a murder thrown into the screenplay around midway, the movie now turns into a thriller. Who is the murderer and what is the motive? Was the Mayor's wife really cheating on her husband or was it the other way around? And what does this have to do with the elections?
Billy is now focussed on uncovering the truth about the murder and this lands him right in between the election. Are the mayors breaking the city further or will they invest in its development?
Towards the end it comes to a point where each person has leverage on the other and each one has something to lose. The question is, who will take the risk and who will give in.
Mark Wahlberg plays his role well. Catherine Zeta Jones plays the first lady of New York. I wish she had more of a role to play, but I guess it was all about the mayor. The ending was slightly abrupt but still unfolds well.
I would give it 3.stars out of 5. Go without expecting much and let the plot surprise you. It's not a twist that will blow your mind away, but it can still surprise you a little bit.
On a lighter note, I wonder if there is a reason why Billy only drinks Jameson whisky in the movie?