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The LA police department have a special team of officers with a talent for reducing big-time crime. The team leader has an excellent track record for crime reduction in other big cities, but his methods are unconventional, and so is he - he's a werewolf. Written by
This action-packed thriller is more of a twist on the traditional LAPD action movie rather than a twist on the werewolf movie. It's starts off with two cops, Max Dire and his partner, and his partner is telling him how he's going to quit the force and get married. And he gets shot in the first ten minutes. Also, Max himself has a troubled marriage. But just as I was about to sit back and let ninety minutes of cop movie clichés wash over me, the movie goes in several new and interesting directions ... it's not great, but it definitely kept me entertained.
It comes from director Anthony Hickox, who's first movie was Waxwork in 1988 (which also featured werewolves), and he does a particularly good job here at emulating John Woo -- the action sequences are very exciting, adrenaline-fueled affairs and in the other scenes there are plenty of close ups and interesting sound effects to set the mood of the movie. Mario Van Peebles does his usual action hero thing with great flare, and Bruce Payne makes an excellent villain as Mr A Garou (Garou is French for werewolf, see -- pretty much the only high-brow werewolf reference in the movie). All in all, the directing is expertly done, the script is decent enough and the acting is competent.
But as a movie, it has it's problems. It doesn't really pick up it's pace until the the second half, when Max Dire becomes one of the pack, and that's when things really start to get interesting. The characters aren't really that likable or original, although the cast on the whole do their best. But as a pilot for a TV series, it almost works, and that's what I initially presumed this was. Or perhaps it just sets itself up for future movies. Who knows. If it was intended as a pilot, that kind of explains why the first forty minutes of the movie are so dull.
In conclusion, it's a fairly entertaining movie elevated by some great directing, but the storyline could definitely have used a bit more work. If you're in the mood for a decent action movie, this is one that I might recommend.
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