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Dark Blue

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Ving Rhames, Kurt Russell, ...

We’ll let Kurt Russell give you the pitch. ”This movie asks the question: If you take one foot and you step into hell, can you actually come back?” Based on a James Ellroy story and adapted by ”Training Day”’s David Ayer (though Russell himself took a few runs at the script), ”Dark Blue” follows a tough, tortured Los Angeles cop trying to solve a quadruple homicide in the few days in April 1992 just before the Rodney King verdicts are announced. Doesn’t exactly sound like the most natural fit for director Ron Shelton — best known for ”Bull Durham” and ”Tin Cup,” romantic comedies about baseball and golf. ”I’m much more interested in politics than sports,” the director admits. ”It just doesn’t look that way from my filmography.” Russell says he and Shelton clicked over the protagonist’s ambiguity. ”We didn’t think he was just a bigot, we didn’t think he was just a killer, we didn’t think he was just a bad guy or a bad cop — we thought that was fairly uninteresting,” the actor says. ”This was a guy [who] at heart was someone you could relate to and wouldn’t mind having in your life — doing deeds that we know are wrong.” (Feb. 21)