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Max Payne

Moody cop thriller fails to inspire

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A depressed New York City cop named Max Payne (Mark Wahlberg), still working on his wife's unsolved murder, discovers a possible link between that cold case and a new series of grisly killings. Also in the mix: two Russian hottie sisters of dubious employment; an internal-affairs investigation; a dead partner; a Big Evil Pharmaceutical Company; winged devils-or-angels; Norse mythology; high-powered weaponry and -- hey there! -- Beau Bridges. At first the story is incoherent, but after getting fleshed out, it's just dumb. John Moore's broody actioner is adapted from a video game, and I sure hope it's more fun to play than this turgid shoot-'em-up stocked with underdeveloped characters is to watch. With no good narrative and lackluster performances, Moore just cranks up the comic-book atmosphere, piling on loads of stylized gloom barely relieved by glowing snow, candles and the occasional laser beam. (AH)

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