Gangster Squad is based on the true tale of a group of LAPD officers and detectives in the late 1940s who used, shall we say, extra-judicial methods to smash the operations that allowed gangster Micky Cohen to control the underworld of the US west coast. The film is directed by Ruben Fleischer, who has mainly worked in the worlds of advertising and music-video production, but has two previous films (Zombieland and 30 Minutes or Less) to his credit. An ensemble cast including Josh Brolin, Sean Penn, Ryan Gosling, Nick Nolte and Emma Stone play out a plot we get the feeling we have already seen before.
With Jesse Eisenberg fresh from The Social Network fame and Danny McBride enjoying the dimming flash in the pan of his career, 30 Minutes or Less is an enjoyable buddy comedy-come-crime caper that is worth a look. You might not remember it 30 minutes later, but you’ll still have a good time.