"This film is more of character study than a crime thriller."
Some directors and/or editors are reluctant to dump as much on the cutting room floor as they should. This is true with "LA Confidential." It is way too long, and this made for an obtuse plot, denying the film the brilliance it should have had.This is not a brilliant film. It could have been, if it were not so long. However, I feel it is a good film, and worth seeing. It should have been tightened up as I lost track of the finer points of the plot, even though I was able to follow the larger plot elements.
The acting was superb and made up (in part)for the fact that the plot was complicated. As I got into the film, my interest in the characters took over from my initial boredom, and thus I did not worry too much that I could not follow the finer intricacies of the story.
On some occasions, while watching the film, I would realize it was a period piece as there were no computers (with instantly accessible records), touch phones, etc. This usually distracts me from enjoying films set in the recent past.
However, this was not distracting this time, as the handling of the time period in conjunction with the acting made it possible, throughout most of the film, to forget that it was a period piece. I just saw the human situation the characters were in.If you like film noir, this film will appeal to you. The characters are well drawn, the plot is believable, and it is not boring. However, in my opinion, the film is just too long.