Street Kings

Street Kings Image
Metascore
55

Mixed or average reviews - based on 28 Critics What's this?

User Score
7.3

Generally favorable reviews- based on 86 Ratings

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  • Starring: , ,
  • Summary: In Street Kings, a police thriller directed by David Ayer, Keanu Reeves plays Tom Ludlow, a veteran LAPD Vice detective. Ludlow sets out on a quest to discover the killers of his former partner, Detective Terrance Washington. Academy Award winner Forest Whitaker plays Captain Wander,In Street Kings, a police thriller directed by David Ayer, Keanu Reeves plays Tom Ludlow, a veteran LAPD Vice detective. Ludlow sets out on a quest to discover the killers of his former partner, Detective Terrance Washington. Academy Award winner Forest Whitaker plays Captain Wander, Ludlow's supervisor, whose duties include keeping him within the confines of the law and out of the clutches of Internal Affairs Captain Biggs (Hugh Laurie). Ludlow teams up with a young Robbery-Homicide detective (Chris Evans) to track Washington's killers through the diverse communities of Los Angeles. Their determination pays off when the two detectives track down Washington's murderers and confront them in an attempt to bring them to justice. (Fox Searchlight) Expand

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Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 12 out of 28
  2. Negative: 2 out of 28
  1. "Kings" covers familiar territory but does so with ruthless efficiency, intense performances and a densely packed plot designed to highlight the moral issues that most concern Ayer and Ellroy.
  2. There's a lot to appreciate in Street Kings, a tight, propulsive action thriller, but there's one thing to marvel at, and that's James Ellroy's command of story.
  3. A solid contemporary crime drama.
  4. 58
    For what's essentially a bad movie, Street Kings is fairly tight and energetic.
  5. 58
    After all the actorly fireworks, Street Kings concludes that the LAPD is an institution where even the well-intentioned can't work clean. Okay. What else?
  6. Reviewed by: Dana Stevens
    50
    There's something cynical about Ayer's attempt to preserve Ludlow as a hero after scene upon scene meant to show, with heavy irony, how lawlessly he enforced the law. You can't lionize your "Dirty Harry" vigilante and expose his hypocrisy, too.
  7. 30
    Two things come to mind as you watch the first act of Street Kings, the first is how fresh and exciting the movie would’ve been if it was released in 1984, the second is the question, “James Ellroy wrote that?”

See all 28 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 25 out of 31
  2. Negative: 1 out of 31
  1. Dec 15, 2010
    10
    great cop movie great plot and acting. the fighting scenes are well done and has some well placed plot twistes. street kings is one of thegreat cop movie great plot and acting. the fighting scenes are well done and has some well placed plot twistes. street kings is one of the best movies of 2009 Expand
  2. ScottA
    Apr 12, 2008
    10
    This was a badass movie if training day was badass this one just blows it away. There is action, suspense, mystery at every corner. I was This was a badass movie if training day was badass this one just blows it away. There is action, suspense, mystery at every corner. I was really enjoyed watching this movie and the cast was awesome, come on Keanu Reeves ( Neo the chosen one) was badass in his role. Chris Evans was really good too. So far this is the best movie in theater, it's a must watch!!! Expand
  3. BoM.
    Apr 16, 2008
    10
    Finally another cop movie that delivers and is king and raises the bar in the world of police corruption, I can't believe no one else Finally another cop movie that delivers and is king and raises the bar in the world of police corruption, I can't believe no one else gets it, and sees how great this film is. It doesn't get any better then this, I have to put this one in my pile of all time classic great dark cop films, and this is my new number one, among the greats like Training Day, Copland, Internal Affairs, Narc, LA Confidential, The Departed, Harsh Times, The Negotiator, Collapse
  4. Nico
    Apr 14, 2008
    8
    Entertaining enough, good twists and some intense moments...decent story about police corruption and street justice.
  5. GeorgeM
    Aug 25, 2008
    8
    It's a decent cop drama with enough twists to keep it interesting. The movie has a cold brutality to it, watching Tom Ludlow (Reeves) It's a decent cop drama with enough twists to keep it interesting. The movie has a cold brutality to it, watching Tom Ludlow (Reeves) being used as a instrument of death for the sake of corruption is interesting to watch.....especially as he slowly finds out the truth. Acting is decent all around and despite some cheesey dialogue here and there everything works out well. The shoot-outs are particular brutal and have a gritty realistic vibe to them, making it all the more intense. This film is definately worth a look.....one of the better " cop / crime dramas" to come around in a while. Expand
  6. Sep 3, 2013
    7
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. This is a sort of Keanu Reeves' comeback flick. After The Matrix trilogy ended, he was in a number of unsatisfactory, mediocre works, such as "Constantine", "The Lake House" and "Thumbsucker". This role is rather strange to him, playing a down-on-his-luck detective, a loose cannon who lives from day to day. And considering that, he does a good job. Only problem is that, aside from Forrest Whitaker, there aren't any other equally capable actors here and some are quite annoying as well. Chris Evans, of The Fantastic Four fame, tries hard but fails as the serious and dedicated sidekick det. Diskant. Of other notable appearances there is the rapper The Game, who is at least authentic in his part.

    I was rather surprised by this film. I must say I didn't expect much from it, but it turned out to be a rather satisfactory film-noir thriller. Reeves might not look his part but he acts it. It is also flawed because of the way everyone is either good or bad, nobody is in between. Reeves' character at first seems to be in between but later turns out to be a typical hero. What else can I say? A little, pleasant surprise and a movie that probably salvaged Keanu's career, at least for the time being, after a string of misfired efforts.
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  7. ShandraL.
    Apr 29, 2008
    2
    Although there are lots of fight scenes, the plot is slow-moving and tedious. Hugh Laurie is a total disappointment and his wraith-like, Although there are lots of fight scenes, the plot is slow-moving and tedious. Hugh Laurie is a total disappointment and his wraith-like, inconsequential character is 2-dimensional and without any apparent reason for being in the film. The only good thing about the film was the plethora of good-looking people - Keanu is still drool-alicious. Expand

See all 31 User Reviews

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