Brown's Requiem (1998)
A faithful, surprisingly low-key adaptation of James Ellroy's first
novel. Ex-cop Fritz Brown (Michael Rooker), a more or less alcoholic
private eye, is hired by a strange superslob golf caddy who wants him
to look out for his pianist sister (Selma Blair), who is living with
a sinister businessman. Typical of an Ellroy plot, nobody is trustworthy
and Rooker, in his best post-Henry role, spends as much time tracking
down his increasingly bizarre employer, whose fortune is tied up in
lost golf balls, as he does breaking the case, which gets wrapped up
without him, prompting a descent into even more despair. An enjoyable
procession of shady character actors (Brad Dourif, Brion James, Tobin
Bell) pop up to swap cynicisms with Rooker, but it doesn't quite have
the mix of grand guignol and noir that distinguishes Cop
or LA Confidential as Ellroy movies.
First Published In: Empire (issue unknown).
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