Rated 3.0

A former petty thief (Jake Gyllenhaal) launches himself on a career as a freelance video “journalist,” stalking street crimes and accidents and selling what he shoots to the desperate news director of a low-rated L.A. TV station (Rene Russo). Gyllenhaal and writer-director Dan Gilroy create a compelling portrait of a slick hustler straight out of What Makes Sammy Run?, prowling the garish neon mean streets instead of the studios of Hollywood, willing to stoop to anything, even murder. Fascinating to see how far journalism has fallen since the heyday of Watergate and All the President's Men—or even 1987's Broadcast News. This world is populated mainly by bottom-feeding sociopaths and the moral idiots who enable them, with only feeble protests of integrity from the sidelines, easily quashed and ignored.