L.A. Confidential [Blu-ray]
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The acting performances in this picture are for the most part first rate: Guy Pearce plays the ambitious Edmund Exley to perfection, Russell Crowe is superb as tough guy detective Bud White, and Kevin Spacey (one of my favorite actors of all time) turns in a stellar performance as the hip narco detective who also acts as a consultant on a Dragnet-like TV series. Strong performances by James Cromwell, Ron Rifkin, and the ubiquitous David Strathairn round out the picture. Although I liked Kim Basinger, I thought she was cast more for her look than for her acting skills. She played the role of a Veronica-lake lookalike prostitute quite well, but hers didn't look like a performance any other competent actress couldn't have pulled off.
The DVD version of this picture is more full of features than any other title I've owned thus far. It includes a documentary about the making of the film which includes cast interviews and clips of Crowe's and Pearce's screen tests. There's also a location map that tells the viewer about each of the major locations where scenes were shot, cast bios, a promo for the soundtrack (featuring some very good early 50's jazz courtesy of Chet Baker and other artists of the era), and the movie can be played with just the soundtrack running.Read more ›
or to discourage criminals from settling in town? Or one who joined the police force to emulate his father, a department legend; to go after "Rollo Tommasi" (the guy who thinks he can get away with anything), but who thereafter lets his career and department politics dictate his actions? Or, in the end, is it the one who has let corruption wipe out so thoroughly the reasons why he once joined the police force that he doesn't even remember a single one of them, but who for once in his life still finds it in himself to go after real criminals, even at the risk of his own life? This is just one, although maybe the central question asked in "L.A. Confidential," the movie based on James Ellroy's novel with the same name. And as does the book, the movie refuses to provide an answer to this and the other questions it asks.
The story is set up by tabloid editor Sid Hudgens (Danny DeVito), who during the movie's opening credits gleefully sums up the L.A. clichés that still hold true today: "Come to Los Angeles! The sun shines bright, the beaches are wide and inviting, ... there are jobs aplenty, and land is cheap. Every working man can have his own house, and inside the house a happy, all American family. You can have all this, and who knows, you can even be discovered - become a movie star or at least, singer. Life is good in Los Angeles: it's paradise on earth." Laughing sarcastically, however, he adds: "That's what they tell ya', anyway, 'cause they're selling an image.Read more ›
As mentioned by Dargis, L.A. Confidential was released in 1997 to huge critical acclaim. It went on to be nominated for nine Academy Awards and is now considered a key film for the 90s. In fact, in answer to a question from an audience member, Dargis feels that had Titanic been released another year, L.A. Confidential would have garnered all the major awards of 1997. Although it didn't, it is still widely regarded as one of the best movies of that year.
Based on the novel by James Ellroy, the film is a dark and gritty noir set in 1950s Los Angeles and deals with police corruption and Hollywood sleaze. The seemingly idyllic Los Angeles of the early 1950s provides the glitzy backdrop for the grisly crime that is the focus of the story: a bloody shotgun slaying of the patrons at an all-night diner. One of the victims was Dick Stensland, a subpar police officer forced into retirement after a drunken brutality incident not long before his death.
Heading the investigation are three very different cops.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Excellent. Memorable story and wonderful casting. 5 star movie.Published 4 days ago by Bruce J. Morrison
What's not to like? Violence, sex, drugs, and swing music! Plus a truly stellar cast form the leads all the way down to the supporting actors. Read morePublished 21 days ago by Jacobite
On my Ten-Best list. Extraordinary performance by everyone involved: Screenwriter, director, actors, Everyone.Published 1 month ago by Amazon Customer
Let me be frank... If the video quality were better, I'd rate this film AT LEAST 4 stars. I think the screenplay and acting in the film are excellent. Read morePublished 1 month ago by G. Cepeda
I have a natural bias toward preferring the book over its matching movie and when I’m able to I usually try to read the book before seeing the movie. Read morePublished 1 month ago by Wesley Bob
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