The Final Cut: ‘Broken City'

(NECN: Erick Weber) - He's one of the most bankable movie stars on the planet, and he's from right here in Boston.

Mark Wahlberg returns to the big screen this weekend in the star-studded thriller "Broken City", but is it worth the $12 it costs to get in the door?

Wahlberg plays a cop turned private investigator hired by the mayor of New York City, played by a seriously spray-tanned Russell Crowe, to investigate his two-timing wife, played by Catherine Zeta-Jones.

But Wahlberg uncovers more than infidelity during his stakeout: He stumbles upon news that the mayor is about to cash-in big time on a deal he made for a Manhattan housing project. It's the kind of PR Crowe doesn't want coming out on the eve of his tenuous re-election bid.

The screenplay is a convoluted mess. Numerous sideshows are introduced for no reason whatsoever as the film trudges on and on and on. Keep your wallet in your pocket: "Broken City" and its seriously broken script breaks off a generous Final Cut score of 65 percent.

Our second film, Michael Haneke's "Amour", just got some serious love from the Oscars with five nominations, including Best Picture and Best Director.

Set almost entirely inside the Parisian apartment of an octogenarian married couple, "Amour" takes an intricate look at the ravaging effects of aging and what happens when things take a turn for the worst.

After suffering a stroke, George is left to care for his wife Anne as she's left in a catatonic state, forcing George to face the inevitable Kevorkian question: When does a loved one's suffering become insufferable?

Emmanuelle Riva is more than worthy of her Oscar nomination for Best Actress, but the film itself is strangely sterile. Something that should be overflowing with emotion is oddly unemotional.

The ungodly praise "Amour" is receiving is undoubtedly tied to the much-lauded credentials of the man behind the camera, but it's a film that falls into the "overrated" category. "Amour" gets a Final Cut score of 85 percent.

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