January 11, 2013 |
Taking its name and inspiration from a real LAPD operation that battled organized crime during the 1940s and '50s, the new film "Gangster Squad" dramatizes the story of Sgt. John O'Mara (played by Josh Brolin) and his squad's crusade against the interloping East Coast mobster Mickey Cohen (Sean Penn). Given free rein to bend (and break) the rules by the police chief, O'Mara and his men (played by Ryan Gosling, Robert Patrick, Anthony Mackie and others) pull no punches when going after criminals.
January 12, 2013 |
When mobster Mickey Cohen ruled Los Angeles in the late 1940s, his favorite hangout was the legendary Slapsy Maxie's nightclub on Wilshire Boulevard. It's long gone now of course, so to re-create it for the new film "Gangster Squad" the filmmakers had to be creative. Production designer Maher Ahmad found the right spot for Slapsy Maxie's almost by accident, while driving around with the film's first location manager. They had been looking for a vintage house in a suburban neighborhood when they passed an Art Deco-inspired block of empty businesses in Bellflower.
January 10, 2013 |
The new crime thriller "Gangster Squad," with its swell cast led by Josh Brolin, Ryan Gosling, Sean Penn and Emma Stone, tries to capture mob-infested Los Angeles circa 1949, when Hollywood glam ruled the Strip, wiseguys took aim with tommy guns and fedoras were all the rage. Those fedoras are a tip-off of problems to come - there are simply too many of them in "Gangster Squad. " Director Ruben Fleischer gives a lot of neon and noir-ish flash to the turf wars between East Coast and Chicago underworld figures for control of the City of Angels and their battles with the undercover cops obsessed with taking them down.
January 14, 2013 |
The hunt for Osama bin Laden last year proved a bigger draw for this past weekend's moviegoers than a battle against organized crime 70 years ago. The thriller "Zero Dark Thirty" had a decisive victory at the box office, grossing $24 million in the United States and Canada, according to an estimate from distributor Sony Pictures. Despite a bigger budget and more famous stars, such as Sean Penn, Ryan Gosling and Emma Stone, "Gangster Squad" opened to a disappointing $16.7 million.
August 29, 2012 |
Hey girl, it turns out that Ryan Gosling really may be able to do it all. The Oscar-nominated actor who has broken up street fights and saved pedestrians from oncoming traffic is now set to direct his first feature film, "How to Catch a Monster. " The movie, which will star "Mad Men" actress Christina Hendricks, was also written by Gosling and is set to start filming next spring. The film, set in what a news release described as a "surreal dreamscape of a vanishing city," follows a single mother whose teenage son uncovers a frightening and mysterious underwater town.
July 23, 2012 |
The realization on Friday that Warner Bros. was poised to release a movie, “Gangster Squad,” which features mobsters opening fire in a movie theater elicited a collective cringe and prompted the studio to consider replacing the scene. But it wasn't just an unfortunate coincidence that a new movie would featuring violence in a theater. Filmmakers have been going to that well for a long time now. Another gangster picture, “Public Enemies,” included a climactic scene in and around a movie theater, with John Dillinger surveilled while at a Chicago screening of the movie "Manhattan Melodrama," then shot as he leaves the showing.