A decent film about Christian Bale being an asshole and being unable to cope with it. A running trend I find in David Ayer's writing is his lack of theming, and his skill in writing characters that feel raw, gritty, and real. Just like in "End of Watch", Ayer creates intense and real characters (maybe not even their characters, but the way their relationship builds). The only real problems are that there is no real point outside of creating shock and drama, and that Christian Bale may be a little too overbearing sometimes. This is such a problem because Bale simply doesn't sell the character most times with his half-baked face. And the film doesn't leave you much outside of, "The character can't cope with his problems." There is no real solution outside of shooting him in the fucking face. There are definitely "things" in the movie, but it's all set-up with no pay-off. I haven't seen Training Day yet, it'd be great to see Ayer step-up his game and create something compelling. He's definitely got the talent.
Now this may be a bit controversial, but I honestly think that a large part of the problem comes from the fact that these characters aren't Woody Allen beta-male bullshit characters. You know the ones I'm talking about, the guys who's unsure of himself and is super awkward and is constantly being picked on by some bully-jock character, yeah. I know. Guess what, this movie is a look into that Jock asshole's life. Look, that complicated, pansy Woody Allen type of male protagonist is OK, but dear God does it plague so many Hollywood movies nowadays. There NEEDS to be movies about the guy who's confident in his ideals, whose challenges aren't birthed from him being awkward or unappealing. It adds so much more interest and complexity than the guy from "Play it Again, Sam". But hey, just my two cents. Not every meathead you meet is simple.