Rated 3.0

A cross-section of classes and ethnicities collide and interact in Los Angeles: a district attorney and his wife (Brendan Fraser and Sandra Bullock), a black cop and his Hispanic partner/lover (Don Cheadle and Jennifer Esposito), a racist cop (Matt Dillon) and his partner (Ryan Phillippe), etc. The script by director Paul Haggis and Bobby Moresco has a scolding air to it, and watching the movie is like taking a dose of castor oil—probably good for us but not a lot of fun. Haggis and Moresco employ some outlandish coincidences that would make Charles Dickens blush, but the dialogue and performances are sharp, directed by Haggis with gritty urban punch. Thirty years ago, this would have been set in New York. Has New York gotten better, has Los Angeles gotten worse, or is Hollywood just too self-absorbed to see beyond itself?