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Gun battle has been cut but still plenty of blood

By Cornish Guardian  |  Posted: January 10, 2013

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THERE is nothing like a dame and the seductress at the centre of Ruben Fleischer's stylish crime thriller Gangster Squad (15) certainly sends temperatures soaring.

She beds two men on opposite sides of the law and ignites a powder keg of jealousy that threatens to raze 1940s Los Angeles to its corrupt foundations.

Based on the real-life battle for the streets of California's most populated city, Gangster Squad conjures memories of The Untouchables with its tug of war between men who live by a badge and hoodlums who operate with their own twisted sense of morality.

Disappointingly, Fleischer's film lacks the finely detailed characters and dramatic tension of Brian De Palma's Prohibition-era drama.

It also lacks a centrepiece sequence at Grauman's Chinese Theatre, which originally depicted gun men shooting indiscriminately at an audience from behind the screen.

In the wake of the shooting at a midnight screening of The Dark Knight Rises in Aurora, Colorado, film-makers chose to remove this set piece entirely and added a newly conceived gunfight on the streets of Chinatown. The bloodbath has gone but Fleischer's picture doesn't skimp on the brutality.

Sean Penn, Nick Nolte, Josh Brolin, Ryan Gosling, Giovanni Ribisi and Emma Stone star.

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