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You ever get the feeling, while watching a movie, that it should be a better movie than it is? That’s the feeling I got while watching Broken City.

Mark Wahlberg plays Billy Taggart, an ex-cop, now-detective, who is called in to do a job for the mayor of New York on the eve of an election. Mayor Hostetler (Russell Crowe) believes that his wife Cathleen (Catherine Zeta-Jones) is having an affair and he needs Taggart to bring him the proof.

Turns out nothing is as it seems and tough guy Billy might be in over his head.

There is a certain expectation of a Mark Wahlberg movie these days: tough guy swagger, a little gun violence, some dry witticisms, and a mildly ambiguous resolution.

The trouble with Broken City though is that it plays like a slightly higher budget version of an American TV show. And since there is the mildest hint of nudity at one point in the movie I’ll grant that it probably resembles a cable show rather than a network show. But it all rings hollower than in previous, more successful outings by the actor.

A character drops by the wayside (the girlfriend played by Natalie Martinez), his assistant’s character—played very ably by Alona Tal—becomes more prominent than one would have imagined, and certain twists modify the nature of the narrative but don’t really deliver any OMG moments.

And seriously, what is up with Russell Crowe’s hair.

Final Analysis: The parts are there but they seem to have been put together in a manner that doesn’t quite sit right. As a result the movie-watching experience is not very satisfactory.

My Advice: Skip it, unless it is a really slow day and you have no other way to pass the time.