Box art for Brooklyn's Finest

Brooklyn's Finest

action & adventure

In the course of one chaotic week, the lives of three conflicted New York City police officers are dramatically transformed by their involvement in a massive drug operation.

Rotten Tomatoes® scores

  • Critic Score
  • Audience Score

common sense

PAUSE for kids age 16
1 out of 5
Drinking, drugs, & smoking
4 out of 5
5 out of 5
Positive messages
0 out of 5
Positive role models
0 out of 5
5 out of 5
4 out of 5

Violent, demeaning police drama too dark for most teens.

what parents need to know

Parents need to know that Brooklyn's Finest is an exceedingly violent police drama starring Ethan Hawke, Don Cheadle, and Richard Gere, with lots of gunfights and killing. It's filled with wall-to-wall foul language (including "f--k," "s--t," and the "N"-word), intense sex scenes that include topless women, and a generally negative treatment of women. The three main characters face tough decisions that end up involving murder and theft. No one is redeemed, nor do they learn lessons, and the film is actually rather hopeless.

what families can talk about

  • Families can talk about the strong violence in the film. How do characters react when other characters are shot and killed? Are they desensitized, or do they suffer? How does the violence make you react?
  • Why are women treated so poorly in an atmosphere of crime and police? Why are they all either strippers, hookers, or working for drug dealers? Why is the strongest female in the movie, Agent Smith (Ellen Barkin), so mean?
  • Sal justifies his behavior because he's trying to help his family, and because the drug money he's stealing doesn't actually provide any use for anyone other than wealthy city officials. Is he right?

movie reviews from Rotten Tomatoes®

  • Tomatometer®

    reviews counted: 24
    see all Brooklyn's Finest reviews
  • Audience


Top Critic Reviews

Fresh: The movie is wounded, but it's also too tough to kill.

- A.O. Scott, New York Times, Friday, March 5, 2010


- Aaron Hillis, Time Out, Thursday, November 17, 2011

Fresh: The drama doesnt just move between the three cops, it prowls between them, occasionally pouncing, and the film builds up quite a bit of tension.

- Andrew O'Hagan, This is London, Thursday, June 24, 2010

Audience Reviews

2 stars

"Its a case of righta and wronga." Antoine Fuqua hasn't really done anything spectacular since his 2001 'Training Day', which is one of the greatest cop movies ever made. After that his come out with a mediocre 'Tears of the Sun', a decent 'King Arthur' and a terrible 'Shooter'. 'Brooklyn's Finest' should be something he manages best.. a cop movie. But despite the fact that he has a lot of decent actors to his help, can he pull it off again? A senior police officer Eddie Dugan (Richard Gere), who is a hardened veteran is only a week from retirement. He fights abuse problems, suicidal thoughts and is in love with a whore. Doesn't seem as a bright future for retirement? Then there's a narcotics officer Sal Procida (Ethan Hawke), whose deeply catholic beliefs has made him head for a big family, living in a moldy house. There's gotta be a way out and maybe some dirty money could be the answer... Don Cheadle plays "Tango", an undercover cop who wants out. The FBI wants Butler aka "Tango" to nail a big time drug dealer Cazin (Wesley Snipes), who he has become good friends with. All these paths lead to a unexpected outcome from where there is no easy way out. Even though the film concentrates on these three main performers characters, and they do it decently, there's one actor who steals the entire movie, even though his role is small but important nevertheless. Wesley Snipes doesn't even have to get in to character, he just is cool and has the credibility of a street gang leader. It's impossible to make Hawke be a badass, he proved that already in 'Training Day'. His looks and his essence just doesn't shout out "Look at me, I'm on the verge of becoming a bad cop!". He's just in panic because his character can't wear a condom because of his religious beliefs... But to go back to Snipes, I've waited for this when he comes back to the big screen and gets out of the spiral of straight-to-dvd movies. Let's just hope that he gets his shit together and does what he does best. Is a credible man of the streets. The main problem with 'Brooklyn's Finest' is, that the main characters become a bit distant to the audience. The film doesn't concentrate on any of the characters, we just see them do what they do. All of them have interesting backgrounds but in my opinion, this storyline would've worked better in a miniseries for television. I just constantly waited when does the paths between them three meet. The ending seemed a bit rushed and I'm not sure if it's because of the rookie screenwriters script or Fuqua's ambition to top 'Training Day'? There's just not enough depth and emotion in the script. 'Brooklyn's Finest' is just too hollow in the end. It feels as if the filmmakers wasn't sure of what they wanted to tell the audience. The climax at the end doesn't bring any bigger feelings because I just didn't get bonded with any of the characters. I wanted to know more of 'em but the movie was just rushed. If it would've concentrated on maybe just two characters, Gere's and Cheadle's who were the more interesting ones, this movie would probably worked better. Now it's just a movie that awakens thoughts but all of this is forgotten after the end credits. A decent movie needs more than just a beliavable mood, it needs a good script.

- TheMachinist, Sunday, October 24, 2010

4 stars

A Step into Brooklyn NY that shows the trash and animals that plague US Cities and towns across America. But still have to give it 4 stars for the action movie it is. 4 Stars

- bbcfloridabound, Monday, September 13, 2010

3 stars

Captain: Don't you wanna do something useful with your last two minutes on the job? Eddie Dugan: Not really. Director Antoine Fuqua returns to the cop drama genre that got him much more notice. This time he puts together three stories, which are all well acted, but unfortunately don't come together as well as they could. Still the performances are very solid and the film looks quite good, capturing a gritty tone that fits. In Brooklyn, amid drug deals, violence, casual racism, poverty, housing projects, and corrupt cops, we follow three officers: Tango (Don Cheadle), African-American, working undercover, believing he's earned a promotion to a desk job but told he has to set up the bust of an ex-con (Wesley Snipes) who saved his life; Sal (Ethan Hawke), who'll commit murder to get cash to buy a house big enough for his family; and, Eddie (Richard Gere), the precinct's oldest beat cop, a week to go before retirement, assigned to mentor an earnest rookie. Can this end well for any of the three? Really, and film that can make Richard seem interesting to me can't be all bad. I tend to find Gere boring, but here, he does a solid job as a cop who always wanted to keep his head down, but is being tested on his way out. I also enjoyed the maturity that Hawke brought to a role, as he tends to still seem young in other roles. Cheadle is always solid, so no complaints there. Then you have Wesley Snipes who is just fantastic in a role that requires him to be looking back on the life he has lived. It's sad that this story couldn't be better. All of the characters pretty much go through the motions that these standard type characters would, with the twist being that they are all in one movie together, oppose to several different ones. It essentially follows all the same patters, but manages to be edited all together this time around, making the storytelling a bit clunky, resorting to shootouts often as a way to break things up. That being said, this is a great looking film. Fuqua does a good job at capturing the city, and his camera work throughout is solid. While there may be too many gunfights to help clear up the plot, the action does look solid when it occurs, and it's quite brutal at times. There are a lot of good elements here, it just doesn't add up to a better feature. Sal Procida: I don't want god's forgiveness. I want his help.

- DrZeek, Friday, July 30, 2010