The set up for Broken City is ripe. A cop (Mark Wahlberg) is asked by the mayor (Russell Crowe) to spy on his wife (Catherine Zeta-Jones), but it turns out the end game is not what was imagined. The trailer suggests that the film could be entertaining, so check it out.

the film is due out January 18, and January used to be considered an off season, but with a number of modest hits emerging from that month, we’re starting to see more interesting B movies and action films hit theaters shortly after the start of the year. Wahlberg has already had numerous success with these sorts of movies, most recently with the film Contraband. It used to be that a movie that came out in January or February was considered a loss or a genre exercise from a major studio. Now it’s when some of the best non-franchise films of the year come out. Here’s that trailer:

Crowe stars in the film, which is directed by Allen Hughes, and he will have Les Miserables hitting screens about three weeks beforehand. If he is up for an Oscar for his work, it’s doubtful that Broken City will cost him a trophy as it was reported that Norbit (which was released after Dreamgirls) hurt Eddie Murphy. It does mean that Crowe, whose star seemed on the wane for a while, is back in action.

Does this look like a fresh take on familiar material, or is it stale?