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Three cops try to set up a sting by establishing their own Fencing operation. They have less than complete support from above and as they begin mingling more and more with the underworld elements decide to finance the operation through re-selling some of the proceeds. Written by
John Vogel <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Directed by and starring Dom Deluise, the story it tells actually was way ahead of its time and based loosely on fact. A group of cops begin a stolen goods sting by "purchasing" the items, and using videotape as evidence against the "sellers". The movie provides a good look at what extremes the police will do to get the bad guy. There are even worse hazards than the thieves, such as the mafia getting involved and a corrupt cop blackmailing them.
The rest of the ensemble cast includes Jerry Reed, Luis Avalos, Ossie Davis (watch for his "black Godfather"), and Suzanne Pleshette, and their excellent acting proves that they are as good as the bigger Hollywood folks. However, it is really Deluise who shines through, with charm, wit and very funny lines, including a running joke about his retirement as a police officer. The random folks who walk into the "trade store" are also funny, and good actors. A few standouts: Deluise "samples" some marijuana, a gun sting resulting in a hilarious but exciting shootout, the climactic brawl that is funny, well choreographed and has an incredible payoff.
This particular movie is underrated and especially overlooked. As a little kid I always watched it a lot on HBO, so I was hooked. I like big budget, modern action-comedies, but the creators of "Showtime" (2002) should have taken a lesson from "Hot Stuff". See it!
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