2/21/2003. 118 min. Rated R.
Action/Crime drama. United Artists
U.S. DVD release, 6/24/2003
Code: DBL 2/2003
AKA (working titles) 4-29-92 ; and The Plague Season.


Set in the Los Angeles Police Department in April 1992, days before the acquittal of four white officers in the beating of black motorist Rodney King and the subsequent L.A. riots. Veteran detective Eldon Perry and rookie Bobby Keough work a high-profile quadruple homicide. Police corruption and racial strife feature strongly.


Writers: James Ellroy (story), David Ayer (screenplay)
Director: Ron Shelton


Kurt Russell as Sgt. Eldon Perry Jr.
Scott Speedman as Bobby Keough
Michael Michele as Sgt. Beth Williamson
Brendan Gleeson as Jack Van Meter
Ving Rhames as Deputy Chief Arthur Holland
Kurupt as Darryl Orchard
Dash Mihok as Gary Sidwell
Jonathan Banks as Internal Affairs Lieutenant James "Jimmy" Barcomb
Lolita Davidovich as Sally Perry


An Internal Affairs lieutenant.


JB doesn't have a lot to do, but if you like Kurt Russell, try it.


Gray suit. Pencil-thin mustache.


"a formula picture in its broad outlines, but a very particular film in its characters and details. It doesn't redeem the formula or even tinker with it very much, but in a performance by Kurt Russell and in some location work on the angry streets, it has something to say and an urgent way of saying it. " "…it has a literate, colloquial screenplay" Roger Ebert, Chicago Sun Times, 2/21/03

"…a brooding, ambitious film about the struggle for the soul of an elite Los Angeles cop, has to struggle with its own soul as well." "unconvincing at key moments, unsure in some of its attempts to add texture to other characters, not quite up to delivering on all its ambitions to be relevant. With sincerity and pulp fiction going toe to toe, there's simply too much bluster." Kenneth Turan, Los Angeles Times, 2/21/03

"There is still a great movie to be made from the rubble of the L.A. riots, but this isn't it." Michael Dubois, Movieline.com.

"Dark Blue is a bit of a mess, but like the Rodney King mess, it makes you think. Any film that accomplishes that can never be out-of-date." Jay Boyar, Orlando Sentinel


Los Angeles.


3 scenes, beginning and end of film.


The scene when he comes in to announce the results of the investigation, with some chuckling and grinning as he makes them wait and enjoys their tension. The last scene where during a promotion ceremony, with the King verdict just released , and violence erupting all over the city. JB is trying to keep cool for the audience, but he can't reach the chief. When he's told the chief is at a fundraiser and doesn't want to be disturbed, JBs voice cracks as he says to get him anyway.


Lolita Davidovitch (BP 4/1993)

Note: Many thanks to MH for her input.