Film Review: L.A Confidential

In this new film review series I will be shouting about the films I love, but ones specifically related to crime, thriller and mystery genres. The other thing they will all have in common is aspects that I think will help you when writing your own stories in these genres.

Films that will be included will include dirty cops, gruesome murder, police procedure, plot twists, clever criminals, crimes scenes, spies and more.


A Review of L.A Confidential

Crimes committed/covered:

Tax evasion, drug dealing, murder, rape, domestic abuse, prostitution, blackmail


In a nutshell:

50’s noire-style thriller featuring three different types of detectives covering separate parts of the same case.



The story follows three detectives in LA – Ed Exley, Jack Vincennes and Bud White. While Exley wants to emulate and usurp his father’s legacy (killed in the line of duty), Vincennes follows the fame game by working on a TV show and selling stories to Sid Hutchins for ‘Hush Hush’ magazine. All White wants to do is proper police work, instead of beating people up as per his boss’ demands. When an internal police query, the arrest of a drug kingpin and a vicious massacre ties them all together, it opens up the seedy-side of LA as new bad guys seem to move into town.



5 good reasons to watch it:

  1. Three different styles of good guys – you could use any one of them as the main character in your story
  2. Excellent twists and turns throughout that are never farfetched
  3. How a police station and its detectives might work through a case
  4. Several ideas for how and why a cop may become ‘dirty’
  5. Indicative of the time period it was set – issues of race, fashion styles, glamour etc


Over to you

Have you seen this film? Did it give you any ideas for stories? Let me know in the comments!

Leave me a reply!