The movie Gangster Squad is officially out, after a delayed initial release date to remove footage similar to the Aurora theater shootings, and I have some thoughts about the finished product.
First of all, if you want to see the strides Hollywood has made in making blood and injuries look extremely realistic, this is the movie for you. The combination of the thick, red-black blood and the bone-crunching, brain-squishing sound effects they’ve added to the fight sequences had me hiding in my scarf for some significant portions. Like every part of the movie, it was a little gratuitous, but they knew it and they embraced it, so I dealt.
Secondly, at the beginning of the movie they flash that new sentence up on the screen that’s so in vogue now: ‘based on a true story’. I always get a little suspicious when I see that, because the verbage is so loose. (That’s what he said.) It’s based on a true story? What does that mean? This story and the true story were both based on a boat? They both had single mothers in them? They had the same name but did none of the same things? I already got let down after walking out of The Impossible and not being able to find one single recorded detail about the real family’s experience. I was understandably wary. But this movie actually is based on a true story! There was a real life Mickey Cohen (who’s played by Sean Penn in the movie) who used to box, and he really was based in Los Angeles and associated with booking operations. Hurray! What a relief! I can read about him on Wikipedia to my heart’s delight! It doesn’t talk about a secret vigilante Gangster Squad that took him down, but even in the movie, Josh Brolin says no one will ever hear about what they did there…so maybe we’re going with that, true story aficionados. I’m back to being a little wary again, especially since the crimes that Mickey Cohen ultimately went to prison for in real life had very little to do with the ultra-violent crimes for which he was being pursued in the movie…but we did just say ‘based on’, so I guess I’ll let it slide. I GUESS.
And thirdly, OHMYGOD I WANT EMMA STONE AND RYAN GOSLING TO DATE SO BAD. You may not think that this has anything to do with a review of the movie, but you’d be wrong. The chemistry between these guys is like…it’s ridiculous. I hate it and love it at the same time. Emma Stone looks so good in this era. So good. The slits on some of the dresses are coming up to just under her armpits and the red hair and dark red lipstick and the Ryan Gosling. Oh the Ryan Gosling. I think we forget how attractive he is, we really do. I know we talk about it all the time, and I don’t intend to stop doing that, but Jesus H. Christ, it’s honestly devastating. And the two of them are made for each other. I can’t get over it. I won’t. I won’t get over it! My lady emotions can’t decide if I’m thrilled or jealous or just aroused, but these so have actual physical sparks flying between them in this scene. This movie is a literal fire hazard. They’re so sexually compatible that I’m using hyperbole. Shit just got real.
But yeah, see this movie I guess? It depends on what you like. Big globby globules flying out of disgusting, gratuitous injuries? Letting Emma and Ryan charmingly wink you into a frothy ecstasy? Following up your standard gangster movie with a trip to Wikipedia? See it in theaters. Everyone else, wait for it to come out on Victrola.
(Image: Ivan Nikolov / WENN.com)