"Gangster Squad" has one of the best cut trailers in recent memory. One, in fact, that suggests it coulda been a contender (Penn's Mickey Cohen is even a boxer, too!). While "Gangster Squad" isn't a bum, as the famed line continues, it's not a prizefighter either. Audiences can see the noirish, based on true events crime flick when it busts into theaters on Jan. 11.
1949 finds Los Angeles on the verge of falling into the hands of gangster Mickey Cohen and Josh Brolin as the all-American cop who sees the struggle against the mob as, as much of a battle to protect the homeland as his war was. Penn's menacing gangster might be a bit over-the-top, but that doesn't make it any less fun to watch him. Brolin makes the perfect counterpart and seeing Ryan Gosling and Emma Stone reunited on screen is satisfying (even if it instills a deep need to revisit "Crazy, Stupid Love", that is never a bad choice).
The script and plot revel in the classic noir tropes, from the lingo to the setting and situations. Ruben Fleischer may not have it the same cinematic sweet spot he did with "Zombieland", but fans of the genre will enjoy what is ultimately a celebration of one of the best styles American cinema has to offer.