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To Live and Die in L.A. (1985)

 -  Action | Crime | Drama  -  1 November 1985 (USA)
7.2
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Ratings: 7.2/10 from 17,199 users  
Reviews: 210 user | 81 critic

A fearless Secret Service agent will stop at nothing to bring down the counterfeiter who killed his partner.

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(novel), (screenplay), 1 more credit »
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Title: To Live and Die in L.A. (1985)

To Live and Die in L.A. (1985) on IMDb 7.2/10

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Richard Chance (as William L. Petersen)
...
...
...
...
...
...
...
...
Thomas Bateman (as Robert Downey)
Michael Greene ...
...
Jack Hoar ...
Valentin de Vargas ...
Judge Filo Cedillo (as Val DeVargas)
...
Michael Chong ...
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Storyline

Two cops in Los Angeles try to track down the vicious criminal Eric Masters. Then, one of them is killed by Masters and the other one swears revenge no matter what the cost. After that, the hunt becomes an ob- session and the law he once swore to uphold becomes meaningless to him. Written by Harald Mayr <marvin@bike.augusta.de>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Detroit, Chicago, New York, Miami were like this! This is THE CITY OF ANGELS! This is L.A. See more »


Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

| |

Release Date:

1 November 1985 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Vivir y morir en Los Ángeles  »

Box Office

Budget:

$6,000,000 (estimated)

Gross:

$967,312 (USA)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (TV)

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

William Friedkin insisted that every activity depicted in the movie should be portrayed with extreme accuracy. Two ex-cons (convicted for money counterfeiting) were hired as technical consultants for the money printing scenes. And for the police procedures scenes, Friedkin hired real T-Men Gerald Petievich (also author of the book "To Live and Die in LA"), Rick Petievich (Gerald's brother) and LAPD living legend Jack Hoar. See more »

Goofs

In the original 1985 theater release, there was a large shadow of the crew and equipment visible on the ground as John Vukovich approaches the warehouse with Chinese character. See more »

Quotes

Carl Cody: Hey, what shit they're showing tonight?
Inmate Ruben: It's that galactical warrior movie.
Carl Cody: I hate that space shit, man!
Inmate Ruben: Nothing but science fiction, man.
See more »

Crazy Credits

Right at the end, after the credits, there is a shot of William Petersen's face See more »


Soundtracks

L.A. L.A.
Written by Jerry Leiber
Music by Jed Lieber
Performed by AM-FM
See more »

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User Reviews

Raw, brilliant crime thriller
21 January 2004 | by (Mountains of Madness) – See all my reviews

When Friedkin went "back on the streets" in 1985 to make TO LIVE AND DIE IN L.A., he made a classic that will endure and that perfectly captures its 80's milieu.

I don't understand these idiots who complain how a film is "dated" by its music. Of course a film is "dated" by its specific elements, but so what. This superb film, which has an amazingly kinetic Wang Cheung score, is about a time (the mid-eighties) and place (L.A.) that is now history, and it is a punishing document.

The film works on many levels. Yes, it is about counterfeiting and superficial (re: counterfeit) relationships. It is about greed, survival, justice and morality. It is also about human beings using and laying to waste other human beings.

These powerful ingredients weave their way through a police procedural/action thriller plot that never stops to catch its breath and is pure cinema.

Willem Dafoe is totally engrossing as the film's villain, while William Peterson delivers a highly focused, tough turn. Dean Stockwell is also a stand-out as a crook lawyer and real cop Jack Hoar is quietly spectacular as Dafoe's mule.

And the film boasts one unbelievable car chase that has not been equaled since.

But LIVE AND DIE is also a film that expertly marries the visual to the aural and depicts a part of Southern California that has not been so credibly depicted before.

Dynamite!


96 of 105 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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Strange actor/actress switch. Scott699
Favorite line from movie shmucking
Question about finally apprehending Cody (Turturro). bam2360
Chance's jeans. Good God! Jefbecco-1
'Why didn't you take the deal Grimes offered ya?' You_Have_Chosen_Wisely
Was this a big movie in the 80s? Never heard of it much these days Lancer01
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