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Brooklyn's Finest Review

Movies.com Critics

2.0

Dave White Profile

Cops, Episode 1001. Read full review

3.5

Jen Yamato Profile

It's hard out here (in Brooklyn) for a cop. Read full review

Other Critics provided by Metacritic.com

Critics scores range from 0 to 100, with higher scores indicating more favorable reviews.

  • 3.0
    43

    out of 100

    Metascore®
    Mixed or average reviews
    based on a weighted average of all
    critic review scores.

  • 10

    out of 100

    Wall Street Journal Joe Morgenstern

    Whatever one may think of the overall style--I think it's ludicrous--Mr. Fuqua clearly wanted his film to be operatic, and so it is, in a tone-deaf way.

    Read Full Review

  • 40

    out of 100

    The Hollywood Reporter Kirk Honeycutt

    Here, due in large measure to a highly derivative screenplay, the director allows several reckless, unprofessional cops drive the movie into utter nonsense.

    Read Full Review

  • 50

    out of 100

    USA Today Claudia Puig

    Melodramatic and laden with cop-thriller clichés, the story, set in one of New York's toughest precincts, is contrived and inauthentic -- and also grisly.

    Read Full Review

  • 50

    out of 100

    Entertainment Weekly Lisa Schwarzbaum

    Ellen Barkin provides unexpected diversion in a madwoman cameo as the PD's brassiest brass. But otherwise the clichés keep coming.

    Read Full Review

  • 75

    out of 100

    Chicago Sun-Times Roger Ebert

    The best things about Brooklyn's Finest are the one-on-one scenes. These are fine actors.

    Read Full Review

  • See all Brooklyn's Finest reviews at Metacritic.com

For Families provided by Common Sense Media

Pause for kids 16 & under

Violent, demeaning police drama too dark for most teens.

What Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that Brooklyn's Finest is an exceedingly violent police drama starring Ethan Hawke, Don Cheadle, and Richard Gere, with lots of gunfights and killing. It's filled with wall-to-wall foul language (including "f--k," "s--t," and the "N"-word), intense sex scenes that include topless women, and a generally negative treatment of women. The three main characters face tough decisions that end up involving murder and theft. No one is redeemed, nor do they learn lessons, and the film is actually rather hopeless.

  • Families can talk about the strong violence in the film. How do characters react when other characters are shot and killed? Are they desensitized, or do they suffer? How does the violence make you react?
  • Why are women treated so poorly in an atmosphere of crime and police? Why are they all either strippers, hookers, or working for drug dealers? Why is the strongest female in the movie, Agent Smith (Ellen Barkin), so mean?
  • Sal justifies his behavior because he's trying to help his family, and because the drug money he's stealing doesn't actually provide any use for anyone other than wealthy city officials. Is he right?

The good stuff
  • message true0

    Messages: The movie's main point seems to be that New York cops eventually find themselves pushed into a corner and forced into making tough decisions that include stealing and murder.

  • rolemodels true0

    Role models: Each of the three heroes tries to do the right thing, but winds up going down the wrong path. Sal desperately needs a new house for his wife and kids (his wife is sick from wood mold) and undercover Tango does not want to rat out a friend. They both take drastic and negative paths because of these goals. The third character, Eddie, is involved in a series of ambiguous decisions, none of which seem to turn out well. The exception is his final act, which is desperate and dangerous, but which has a good goal.

What to watch for
  • violence false4

    Violence: The movie has very strong violence throughout, including the rough and demeaning treatment of women and prostitutes. Almost every character has a gun and uses it on some other character, sometimes without consequences. There are also scenes of characters beating each other with fists. Constant yelling.

  • sex false5

    Sex: Eddie has intense, graphic sex with a topless prostitute. (Oral sex is included.) Many other women, including prostitutes, strippers, barmaids, and girlfriends of drug dealers, appear topless. There is occasional crass sex talk as well.

  • language false5

    Language: A cornucopia of foul language here, with frequent uses of "f--k," "s--t," and the "N" word, in all their variations. We also hear "ass," "bitch," and many other words, including a few uses of "God" and Jesus" as exclamations.

  • consumerism false1

    Consumerism: A Pepsi logo is visible in a storefront. The next shot shows some Pepsi on a shelf.

  • drugsalcoholtobacco false4

    Drinking, drugs and smoking: Drug dealers are at the center of the story. "Tango" is undercover as a drug dealer and Sal is a narcotics cop. Drugs are visible and pervasive throughout. Eddie's prostitute snorts cocaine. Eddie drinks both whisky and beer and has a drinking problem. Sal smokes cigarettes regularly.

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