Hidden Gems: Dark Blue
With Kurt Russell, Scott Speedman, Ving Rhames and Brendan Gleeson.
Kurt Russell sports some terrific hair and turns in one of his best performances in this ballsy corrupt cop drama. Set in Los Angeles in 1992, the film offers some interesting social commentary as racial tensions boil over in the aftermath of the infamous Rodney King beatings. Scott Speedman is incredibly bland (as always) as Russell’s green trainee and is constantly upstaged by the charismatic veteran. Aside from Speedman’s performance, my biggest gripe with the film is that it lacks that one intense shootout/stand-off that seemingly all great cop movies have. You remember those climactic final scenes in L.A. Confidential and Cop Land? Yeah, Dark Blue never approaches that intensity but the film is worth watching for Russell’s criminally overlooked performance. He seamlessly shifts from antagonist to protagonist halfway through the film, and he’s absolutely electrifying in the film’s final scene.
RIYL: Cop Land, Street Kings, Training Day.