Unlike another 2019 cop thriller namely Black and Blue – 21 Bridges actually delivers an equilibrium of action, suspense and police procedural-style drama.
The performances are great from a star-studded cast. Chadwick Boseman (Black Panther) stars in the lead role and there’s also the beautiful Sienna Miller (G.I. Joe, American Sniper), the ever-talented J.K. Simmons (Whiplash), Taylor Kitsch (who was amazing in the 2018 miniseries Waco and gives another stand-out performance here), Keith David (Platoon, The Thing)and the movie also stars a lesser-known thespian by the name of Stephan James.
The flick falls flat at some points due to Adam Mervin and Matthew Michael Carnahan’s screenplay as it becomes muddled with plot errors – especially in the middle. The direction by Brian Kirk who is mostly known for directing episodes of top-notch TV shows such as Game of Thrones and The Tudors, should direct more feature films, as 21 Bridges has all the factors which make cop thrillers successful such as high-octane action, super-fast pacing, a mystery which must be solved by a hero detective, and the rarest aspect which isn’t found in most modern cop thrillers nowadays: A Message.
If you ignore the plotholes and an ending which could’ve been written better, 21 Bridges is one of the finest thriller movies of 2019, and even though Black and Blue featured an African-American police heroine and tried to discuss race through the screen, the Russo Brothers-produced 21 Bridges does it way better while delivering the message subliminally instead of an in-your-face manner.
The Rating: 3 out of 4.