Hollywood Homicide (2003)

Directed by Ron Shelton

It’s all but impossible to describe this film as either good or bad. To do so, you would have to remember it. For the life of me, I can’t.

This is the problem with the movie.

Despite having all the elements in place for a cop-buddy movie, Hollywood Homicide is totally forgettable. This is probably because those elements are followed so precisely, there is nothing memorable. Everything evokes a style but, in this case, the style encompasses nothing. It’s just the style.

There is no life in the movie. You recognize humorous situations and lines but only by their structure. They simply aren’t funny.

The action is boring. It’s all stuff you’ve see a ga-zillion times before.

What is surprising about this movie is that it was made at all. I generally enjoy movies by Ron Shelton, like Bull Durham and Dark Blue.

I just don’t understand how this one got made.

I suspect it looked good on paper. In the mind’s eye, the filmmaker’s could probably see how the film would play and it seemed good. There may even have been some enthusiasm for the project at one time (hard as that is to believe).

But once they were too far into the process of shooting the movie and saw they had a turkey on their hands, they couldn’t go back.

I imagine a moment where everyone looks at one another and someone asks, “How the hell do we get out of this?”

The answer, by that time, was, “You don’t.”

The performances by Harrison Ford and Josh Hartnett are bland – not that they have anything to work with in terms of script. Both come across as lifeless, as if they’ve made no effort to make anything of the parts they’ve been saddled with.

While there may be a brief moment here or there where one of the two begins to do something a bit subtle, it’s as if a tremendous wave of ennui engulfs them and they say, “Ah, why bother?”

And really, who could blame them?

Hollywood Homicide is a tiresome retread of a worn out story. It’ll cure your insomnia, however.

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