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Brooklyn cop Gino Felino is about to go outside and play catch with his son Tony when he receives a phone call alerting him that his best friend Bobby Lupo has been shot dead in broad daylight on 18th Avenue in front of his wife Laurie Lupo and his two kids by drug kingpin Richie Madano, who has been Gino and Bobby's enemy since childhood. As Gino is hunting Madano down, Gino discovers the motive behind Bobby's murder. This is when Gino's hunt for Madano leads to the showdown of a lifetime. Written by
Todd Baldridge <email@example.com>
Gino Felino, like Nico Toscani, Mason Storm and John Hatcher before him, is a good cop in a bad mood. His partner Bobby Lupo has been gunned down in the streets in front of his wife and kids by crazed wannabe gangster Richie Madano. Richie was always into something bad, even when he was a kid and now seems to be going psycho, snorting coke and smoking crack. He's got a one-way ticket to oblivion and he's going to have fun getting there along with his evil henchmen Joey Dogs, Bobby Arms and Bochi. Luckily for the good citizens of Brooklyn, Gino is on the case and on the mission to find Richie by means of broken bones, severed limbs and agonizing pain.
As Steven Seagal movies go (the pre-1997 Golden Years) Out For Justice is definitely one of the strongest. Tight fast-paced direction, well balanced widescreen framing, a great score by David Michael Frank and an impressive cast of familiar faces give it a lasting impression. Also, Seagal has mentioned that this is his favorite film of his own and you can really see it in his acting. He's often been criticised for not giving any effort and I wholeheartedly agree in regard to his later films. But there was a time when he did try and in Out For Justice you can see that a little effort goes a long way. I know his Brooklyn accent isn't THAT convincing and his acting in general isn't exactly on par with Olivier, but if he we're to be just as enthusiastic about his other characters then maybe his film career wouldn't be in the toilet.
Out For Justice never loses its appeal. William Forsythe is just so evil as Richie that I've never been convinced by the nice guy characters he's played in other movies. The fight scenes in which Seagal takes measures to ensure maximum suffering are most entertaining and small moments of character give it a strange edge. But you can tell that there's been a lot of stuff left out. This is especially evident in the montage sequences where characters are wearing different clothing and meet up with each other all over the place. There is also hints at more murders by Richie in the trailer that are never seen or referenced in the film at all.
Proof positive that Seagal once had it. But then came religion and then...well...you know how it went.
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