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Russell Crowe and Mark Wahlberg star in the dog eat dog corruption thriller Broken City.

Film review: Broken City

Here’s the deal. There are three key pieces of information that roll up in Broken City’s first three scenes: Billy Taggart (Wahlberg), a New York cop, shoots and kills a suspect he’s chasing; a judge decides the district attorney’s office doesn’t have sufficient evidence to bring charges against Taggart; Mayor Nicholas Hostetler (Crowe) and the police commissioner congratulate Taggart on beating the rap, and he’s forced to resign.

Best picture nominee Zero Dark Thirty compels, repulses, and carries out its mission to hold audiences captive through the well-known ending. (Sony Pictures)

Film review: Zero Dark Thirty

The torture debate detracts from a different critical narrative; imagine how we’d howl if the movie whitewashed that part of America’s recent past. But forget the politics. This is a movie. As a piece of drama, Zero Dark Thirty is a marvel.