Mark Wahlberg’s Team-Up With Russell Crowe Is Crushing It On Streaming

Broken City, starring Mark Wahlberg and Russell Crowe, was a flop upon release but has become a streaming hit on Amazon Prime.

By Mark McKee | Published

Mark Wahlberg in Broken City

It is hard to imagine that a movie starring two of the most well-known actors in Hollywood, Mark Wahlberg and Russell Crowe, was a flop. But if you ask the casual moviegoer about the movie Broken City, they will most likely not have any clue that the two superstars starred in the film back in 2013. That is hopefully changing for the two actors and the director Allen Hughes, as, according to Flix Patrol, the film is killing it over on Amazon Prime

Like many films, Broken City is getting a new life on streaming, this time nearly a decade after the release of the film. When it first dropped, the Mark Wahlberg vehicle was murdered by the critics who called it formulaic and unremarkable, and it recouped only $19 million of the $35 million budget. But it now sits at an impressive number three on Amazon Prime’s top ten movie list, behind Jurassic Park: Dominion and Black Phone

While it may seem odd to see a ten-year-old movie on the top ten anywhere, streaming is good for just that, and Amazon’s top ten also holds Indiana Jones and the Raiders of the Lost Ark (1981), Jesse Stone: Sea Change (2007), and Sicario (2015). An interesting note to that top ten is the number of films that feature massive stars like Mark Wahlberg and Russell Crowe that the critics also panned. Dominion‘s Chris Pratt and Sam Neill couldn’t win people over, Ambulance‘s Jake Gyllenhaal was poorly received, and Memory‘s Liam Neeson, Guy Peirce, and Monica Bellucci were largely forgotten. 

Broken City is about Detective Billy Taggert (Wahlberg), who investigates the wife (Catherine Zeta-Jones) of the Mayor of New York City (Crowe). He later discovers that the mayor duped him into revealing his wife’s source, who was uncovering the mayor’s corruption and later ends up dead. The storyline wasn’t the most original cop movie out there, but the screenplay did end up on the 2008 Blacklist, which is a list of the industry’s favorite movies that weren’t made. 

Russell Crowe and Mark Wahlberg in Broken City

That fact, and the cast that included two Acadamy Award winners in Russell Crowe (Gladiator) and Catherine Zeta-Jones (Chicago), two-time nominee Mark Wahlberg (The Departed and The Fighter), and also Jeffrey Wright and Barry Pepper makes the flop a little surprising. Crowe, however, isn’t a stranger to unexpected failures with big casts as he was also involved in another loss that starred one of the industry’s biggest names, 2017’s The Mummy with Tom Cruise. While Crowe was on top of the world in 2000 with Gladiator, he has since been reduced to more cameos in films like Zack Snyder’s Justice League and Thor: Love and Thunder. 

On the other hand, Mark Wahlberg took his initial show as a serious actor in Boogie Nights and turned it into one of the more successful careers in Hollywood. He has appeared in everything from action films like Shooter and Lone Survivor to comedies like Ted and The Other Guys. His talents are on full display in Broken City, and lucky for us, it is getting another shot as a top streamer on Amazon.