Rampart (2011)

R   |    |  Crime, Drama

Rampart (2011) Poster

Set in 1999 Los Angeles, veteran police officer Dave Brown, the last of the renegade cops, works to take care of his family, and struggles for his own survival.


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5 March 2012 | Michael_Elliott
Great Performances Make Film
Rampart (2011)

*** 1/2 (out of 4)

Woody Harrelson gives a tour de force performance playing David Brown, one of the last dirty cops still working for the LAPA in 1999. He's a dirty cop who doesn't seem to realize he is one. He was once married to two different women, sisters, and now he tries to keep them and their kids in the same house so that they can live the way a "family" is supposed to yet he doesn't realize that a good family life isn't by having kids with two sisters. Brown finally gets in over his head when he's filmed beating a man and this sets off a range of events that leave him spinning out of control. RAMPART, written by James Ellroy and director Oren Moverman, doesn't tell a straight crime story but instead it really looks at a bad man and tries to explain why he's bad. I think the bottom line is that the film is simply trying to say that there are bad people out there who are just bad all the way around and it doesn't have to be for lust, money or fame. While I do question some of the directorial choices and I think a little more focus would have helped, the main reason to check this film out is for the wonderful performances from the all-star cast. Sigourney Weaver plays a DA tired of a cop thinking he can get away with anything. Cynthia Nixon and Anne Heche are good as the ex-wives. You have Robin Wright turning in a very effective performance as a mysterious woman who enters the cops life. Ice Cube is effective in his few scenes as is Ben Foster playing a crippled vet. We even get Steve Buscemi and Ned Beatty in small but effective roles. Of course, the entire cast centers around the performance of Harrelson and this is certainly yet more proof that when given the right material he can be one of the most raw and effective actors out there. Harrelson is so effective no matter if he's just listening or speaking because you can just look at him and see all the rage and emotion built up. I really thought the actor did a remarkable job at letting the slime slip out of this character without making him a flat out creep or going so over-the-top where you feel like you're watching someone fake. I won't spoil the ending but it's certainly one that makes you think about the events you've just seen. RAMPART isn't a flawless movie but the performances are so strong that it's highly recommended.

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Box Office


$12,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$60,446 12 February 2012

Gross USA:


Cumulative Worldwide Gross:


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