Broken City (2013) - Rotten Tomatoes

Broken City (2013)



Critic Consensus: Broken City's thinly sketched, formulaic script offers meager rewards for all but the least demanding noir aficionados.

Movie Info

In a broken city rife with injustice, ex-cop Billy Taggart (Mark Wahlberg) seeks redemption and revenge after being double-crossed and then framed by its most powerful figure, the mayor (Russell Crowe). Billy's relentless pursuit of justice, matched only by his streetwise toughness, makes him an unstoppable force and the mayor's worst nightmare. (c) Foxmore
Rating: R (for pervasive language, some sexual content and violence)
Genre: Drama
Directed By:
Written By: Brian Tucker
In Theaters:
On DVD: Apr 30, 2013
Box Office: $19.7M
20th Century Fox - Official Site


Mark Wahlberg
as Billy Taggart
Russell Crowe
as Mayor Nicolas Hostet...
Catherine Zeta-Jones
as Cathleen Hostetler
Jeffrey Wright
as Commissioner Carl Fa...
Barry Pepper
as Jack Valliant
Kyle Chandler
as Paul Andrews
Natalie Martinez
as Natalie Barrow
Alona Tal
as Katy Bradshaw
Griffin Dunne
as Sam Lancaster
James Ransone
as Todd Lancaster
Show More Cast

News & Interviews for Broken City

Critic Reviews for Broken City

All Critics (145) | Top Critics (41)

It's a local-government corruption thriller that doesn't care about logic or consistency or the people watching it.

Full Review… | January 6, 2014
Top Critic

The essence of "Broken City" is forgettable, and that's its only strength. Once it's over, you won't be bothered to think about it ever again.

Full Review… | April 9, 2016

Broken City is passable, occasionally entertaining but ultimately uninspiring.

Full Review… | October 5, 2013

A complete mess, this drama is packed with sophomoric political ideas, unfocused storylines and inane dialogue.

Full Review… | June 30, 2013
Big Hollywood

the screenplay, filled with hackneyed implausibilities and trite characterization, constantly lets everyone down

Full Review… | April 22, 2013
Film Racket

It is predictable procedural fodder - you can see the "twists" coming a mile away - but done with enough conviction to paper over the plot holes and cliches.

Full Review… | March 17, 2013

Audience Reviews for Broken City

Nothing special. Note to Russell...don't sign for a movie with Mark Wahlberg in it. It will bring you down...

Cynthia S.

Super Reviewer


Directed by one half of the Hughes Brothers, this is the story of one man's shot at redemption and revenge in the wake of corruption treachery.

It had a lot of promise, but unfortunately doesn't have a lot to offer. It's like a really slick half baked take on Chinatown, but without the guts, intelligence, or skill. Don't get me wrong, there's some talented people involved here, but they just seem to be coasting along on auto pilot, and it shows.

The film has a few good moments, but overall proves to be largely unremarkable and run of the mill. See it if you want, but you would probably be better off watching something else.

Chris Weber

Super Reviewer

Entertaining but very flawed political thriller about a private eye (Mark Wahlberg) who was thrown off the NYC police force but gets a major job when the Mayor (Russell Crowe) asks him to find out who his wife (Catherine Zeta-Jones) is messing around with. This case is rather easy for the man but soon he realizes that this is just the start of dirty business. BROKEN CITY, as a thriller, really doesn't work because the plot is rather silly. It's especially silly if you start to think about it too long and that's why it's best to just walk into the theater, turn your brain off and enjoy the excellent cast that's offered up here. It's always amazing to see how many great actors they can get for less-than-stellar material but the three leads are excellent as are Jeffrey Wright, Barry Pepper and Alona Tal. The performances are certainly the reason to check this film out as they help keep the film moving along no matter how many twists and turns get thrown at us. Wahlberg is once again a lot of fun playing the tough guy and has no problem with this. Crowe appears to be having fun with the less than serious role and Zeta-Jones gets a couple nice scenes along the way. I thought Pepper is the one who really stood out playing the man going up against Crowe's character in the upcoming election. Tal was also a breathe of fresh air when she's on screen. An almost unrecognizable Griffin Dunne also plays a supporting part. Director Allen Hughes does a nice job at keeping the film moving at a nice pace but there's still no question that the material just isn't all that strong. I'm not sure if there were countless re-writes or not but the screenplay pretty much hits on every cliché that this lower-quality political thrillers do. The twists and turns aren't all that shocking and neither is the ending. Still, BROKEN CITY remains enjoyable thanks to the cast. 4 Stars 5-21-13

Bruce Bruce

Super Reviewer

Broken City Quotes

Mayor Hostetler: Tell me things haven't changed!
– Submitted by Chris P (3 years ago)
Mayor Hostetler: There are some wars you fight and some wars you walk away from, this is the fighting kind.
– Submitted by Chris P (3 years ago)

Discussion Forum

Discuss Broken City on our Movie forum!