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Lottie Mason is a police vice cop who has just the right looks to be a decoy for the whore-mungers on the streets of Los Angeles. She seems to always be where the action is whether it be ... See full summary »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Lottie Mason
Lt. Joe Morgan
Charley Katz
Charles McCaughan ...
Frank Munoff
Dr. Gardner
Tony Peron
Nick Savage ...
Dan Bell ...
Tom Dahlgren ...
District Attorney
Ted Gates


Lottie Mason is a police vice cop who has just the right looks to be a decoy for the whore-mungers on the streets of Los Angeles. She seems to always be where the action is whether it be vice or drugs. While she is attempting to help Stan, the District Attorney, set-up a drug buy with a witness he needs for another case, they seem to have mutual attraction in each other. Lt. Joe Morgan has the hots for her, but she cant stand him. Written by Richard Jones <>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Shes an undercover cop. Seduced by a fantasy. Trapped in a mystery. Led by a dangerous impulse. Its easy to lose control.


Crime | Drama | Thriller


R | See all certifications »




Release Date:

6 April 1990 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

A bűn vonzásában  »

Filming Locations:

Box Office


$2,544,504 (USA)

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?


The last theatrical film written by Leigh Chapman. See more »


Lt. Joe Morgan: I feel like a goddamn mushroom. Kept in the dark and fed bullshit.
See more »


Written and Performed by Guillermo Fernandez
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User Reviews

A Walk on the Wild Side
25 February 2016 | by (upstate ny) – See all my reviews

Directed by Sondra Locke this is a gritty story of an Los Angeles femme fatale vice cop Lottie Mason (Theresa Russell) and her "Walk On The Wild Side" of cusp of Noir. It is a dance with with death, love, power and temptation. It's probably one of the Last of the Warner Brothers Noirs.

A piano riff dissolves the blackness into an elevated view of a sleazy Hollywood, hot sheet motel block, at the corner of Las Palmas and Sunset Blvd., one of those all look alike City of Angels low profile strips. Time the late '80s, Madonna is in vogue. The scene is accented by wet pavement reflecting neon. A long ringletted blonde "angel" is strutting her stuff in tight gold Lamé snakeskins, but this celestial Femme Fatale has clipped wings. She's trolling the midnight drift, a lure with hooks. Lonely sad losers cruise the mainstem scoping the fast skirts that will get them a shot at 20 minutes of ecstasy. The opening title sequence displays the workings of the vice stakeout with the excellent noir-ish stylistic cinematography of Dean Semler. The piano riff repeats and become a leitmotif for Lottie's darkside.

Impulse is set strictly in Squaresville, it's a story of the world of hard working cops doing their everyday busts. Lottie's night in and night out tolling the low company is affecting her personal life. Her various Vice assignments, i.e., impersonating a streetwalker, a junkie, a B-girl hooker, a drug dealer has her visiting the division PR office and the psychiatrist/counselor on a regular basis for an hour session mandated by Internal Affairs. They want to know if having to lie and deceive on a regular basis is affecting her job. Her Doctor, Dr. Gardner seems more interested in her personal life her debts and her love life. Lottie when questioned about her torpedoed relationships states that she's only been with cops and she rattles off squads, Vice, Homicide, and Bunco rather than names. Gardener asks about Lottie's quasi-stalker encounter with Lt. Joe Morgan (George Dzundza) an ex boyfriend that she didn't report. Lottie says it's because he'd say she encouraged it. But Lottie makes a confession that she is mainlining on the power of her femininity while staring at her reflection in the window in a great sequence:

Another assignment has Lottie going undercover as a heroin junkie in a shooting gallery, this combined with a second storyline concerning a 2 year old case, a witness protection program witness and a double cross drug deal in NYC brings a District Attorney named Stan (Jeff Fahey) into Lottie's world. Stan is attracted to her and they have an affair though Lottie is still a bit standoffish a bit gun-shy.

After an adrenaline rush chase down a high-rise and shootout with two drug trafficking perps in a grocery, Lottie is on stressed and on edge, Stan tries to comfort her but she wants him to back off and give her space. She takes off in her Camaro to unwind. She gets a flat tire drives into a service station and while the tire is changed drops into the bar across the street and into Noirsville.

At the bar she's picked up by Tony Peron (Shawn Elliott) who is coincidentally and unbeknownst to Lottie, the drug dealer partner of the man Stan has in witness protection. He asks her if there was anything in the world she could do what would it be. Lottie tells him "I'd get on a plane and go somewhere I'd never been". Tony pulls out a deck of hundred dollar bills and counts off ten, Lottie tells him she wants to go "first class". Tony adds another five, but tells her that first she'll have to go to his house. On impulse Lottie picks up the dough and follows him out to his Beverly Estates house.

When Tony gets her to his place he begins to get busy with it. Lottie holds him off telling him she wants to freshen up. Tony tells her to use the upstairs bedroom bath. Lottie has second thoughts as she stands by vertical blinds in a nice sequence. Afterwards while washing her face she hears two gunshots, and peering down the stairway spots Tony dead on the tile floor. The shooter is actively searching the house. Since her gun was confiscated after the recent shooting Lottie scrambles to hide from the killer.

The shooter leaves the house and Lottie checks out Tony popped twice in the head. She goes through his clothes finding a locker key in his jacket. She wipes down all the surfaces she touched calls the cops disguising her voice and splits. At the airport the next day she opens the locker and finds a suitcase with close to a million dollars.

Sondra Locke did a wonderful job at directing this little Neo Noir gem. The writing by John DeMarco and Leigh Chapman, is competent and consequently the characters are very well developed. This is Theresa Russell's best performance. The rest of the cast are Jeff Fahey as Stan, George Dzundza as Lt. Joe Morgan, Lynne Thigpen as Dr. Gardner, and Shawn Elliott as Tony Peron. The music by Michel Colombier is great along with the various pieces that comprise the soundtrack. Again I can't say enough about the Noir stylistic cinematography which is excellent.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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