We Own the Night 

The first time I saw Martin Scorsese's The Departed, I was blown away. I've never seen a crime drama with so much gusto. Well, here's a little story about a donkey, We Own the Night, that thinks it's a racehorse, The Departed.

Stars Mark Wahlberg (Shooter) and Joaquin Phoenix (Walk the Line) co-produced the film, meaning they must've thought this an exciting film. Several yawns and two hours later, I'm disinclined to agree with them.

In 1988 New York, Captain Joe Grusinsky (Wahlberg) has just been promoted to the head of a drug task force. When his younger brother Bobby, a drug enthusiast, refuses to heed warnings from Joe and their police chief father (Robert Duval, Gone in 60 Seconds), Bobby heads to the wrong side of the law. But when Joe is shot, Bobby joins up to help in the fight against nefarious dealers, placing him and girlfriend Amada (Eva Mendes, Hitch) in grave danger.

There are (brief) moments of intense action, but for the most part, I was left wondering why I should care about any of the characters and what happens to them. There are scenes of sexuality and drug use, but nothing that actually aids the story.

This isn't a particularly inspiring crime drama. You know which title I recommend if that's what you're seeking. (See sentence one.) And this isn't the finest work of any of the actors involved. All in all, that spells pass.

These videos courtesy of Hollywood Video, 590 Broadway Ave., 208-342-6117.

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