Back during Oscar season Mark Wahlberg was crossing his fingers that heat from The Fighter would end up helping out his other passion projects, notably including Broken City. A directorial gig for Allen Hughes, the film is based from a black-listed script that sports a noirish story about a private investigator getting involved with murder and infidelity involving a mayor. Now the apparent quality of the script has drawn in Russell Crowe, who will play said mayor of said broken city.

With a $60m budget, this is reasonably well-funded detective thriller, though I know not everyone is particularly enamored with the films of Allen Hughes. I’ve always felt he was one step short of being a really interesting filmmaker, and his films range from solid to pretty good to almost great. Maybe a nice gritty urban thriller with strong actors and a possibly amazing script are what he needs to blow socks off.

I can definitely see Russell Crowe playing a wonderful sleazy mayor, though Wahlburg as a P.I/noir hero seems a little like Max Payne/wish-fulfillment territory. I love Wahlberg in the right part, but he sets off my “playing pretend” radar when playing the wrong kind of tough guy.

Your thoughts on this arrangement of material and talent? Hit me on twitter, in the comments, or on the boards.

(via THR)