Wednesday, March 31, 2010
Brooklyn's Finest Casting Arrested By Procedural
Posted by Courtney Small
Brooklyn's Finest strives to be a gritty cop drama were all the characters live in that grey area of life. The film even opens with a discussion on how sometimes breaking the law is actually a good thing for bad people to do in times of crisis. Yet the true murkiness is not found on the hard Brooklyn street but in the film's script. The picture is a slow burner that actually starts off very promising. Antonie Fuqua's film teases us at first, just when you think the payoff is about to happen...he decides to keep you dangling just a little longer. Unfortunately we are dangling for so long that Fuqua give us, unintentionally of course, a film with two endings. The first one is what I like to call the "false ending." It is the point in the film where, if the credits began roll, you would feel like you had a satisfying experience. I will not give away the details but will merely say it is the redemption moment for the characters. It is where they wake up and realize that they need to start making better choices.
The only problem with this style of ending is that it does not fit with the usual aesthetics of an Antonie Fuqua film. After seeing seven of his nine films, the one thing I have come to expect from Fuqua is some sort of shootout or action sequence to cap things off. A film is not over until the body count rises and the characters are all out of bullets. Which brings me to the preposterous final act of the film, or the "official ending" if you will. This is where all logic is thrown out the window and the men find themselves in the same housing complex in "Dirty Harry" mode . It is at this point in which both the story and the characters lose all credibility. By time the film ends we feel nothing for these characters or the situations they found themselves in. Brooklyn's Finest might have actually been a decent film without this ending. Sure it would still be formulaic but enjoyable nonetheless. Sadly the final act of the film is so bad that it is tough to recommend this film on any level.