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Running Time:
118 minutes

Rating: R Restricted. Under 17 Requires Accompanying Adult.

Rating Explanation:
for violence, language and brief sexuality

Additional Info:
DVD Features: Commentary with Director Ron Shelton; "Internal Affairs": 3 Features; Photo Gallery; Original Theatrical Trailer

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This is a contemporary version of James Ellroy's memorably "L.A. Confidential," a study of corruption in the LAPD in the early 1950s. This time the action is moved up to 1992, in the days just preceding the end of the Rodney King beating trial. The focus is on an unprincipled veteran cop and his young rookie, similar to the pair in "Training Day" which was also written by this film's scripter - David Ayer. This time the older cop is white and we learn early on that he's the corrupt one. But this time the end of the film has been turned into wildly exaggerated melodrama, complete with shoot-outs and a pompous concluding speech, which comes across as particularly tasteless set against the riots which followed the announcement of the Rodney King verdict. Director Ron Shelton (Bull Durham, White Men Can't Jump) seems to be out of his sports themed element this time. Some scenes are clumsy and the final chase is so confused that it's almost impossible to tell what's going on. Kurt Russell is fine as the senior officer in the department's Special Investigations Squad, although he overacts at times especially in his big oration at the close. The supporting cast includes Brendan Gleeson as his crooked boss, Lolita Davidovich who's pretty much wasted as his wife, boyishly handsome Scott Speedman who's utterly bland as the rookie who happens to be Gleeson's nephew, and he's conveniently involved with a policewoman (Michael Michele) who, is the assistant to their straight-arrow chief (Ving Rhames) who's intent on bringing Gleeson down. These interrelationships obviously cause some surprising twists and counter-twists, designed to be interesting and powerful, but in fact are so predictable that the end result never quite rings true.

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