A mentally unstable Vietnam War veteran works as a night-time taxi driver in New York City where the perceived decadence and sleaze feeds his urge for violent action, attempting to save a preadolescent prostitute in the process.
Robert De Niro,
John McClane, officer of the NYPD, tries to save his wife Holly Gennaro and several others that were taken hostage by German terrorist Hans Gruber during a Christmas party at the Nakatomi Plaza in Los Angeles.
Hunters and their prey--Neil and his professional criminal crew hunt to score big money targets (banks, vaults, armored cars) and are, in turn, hunted by Lt. Vincent Hanna and his team of cops in the Robbery/Homicide police division. A botched job puts Hanna onto their trail while they regroup and try to put together one last big 'retirement' score. Neil and Vincent are similar in many ways, including their troubled personal lives. At a crucial moment in his life, Neil disobeys the dictum taught to him long ago by his criminal mentor--'Never have anything in your life that you can't walk out on in thirty seconds flat, if you spot the heat coming around the corner'--as he falls in love. Thus the stage is set for the suspenseful ending.... Written by
Tad Dibbern <DIBBERN_D@a1.mscf.upenn.edu>
In the director's commentary, Michael Mann said that Neil's trademark gray suits were designed to help him blend into a crowd and not draw attention to himself. See more »
During the scene in which Albert tells Vincent about meeting his brother, Albert says, "Vincent, Vincent, I swear man, tonight's the best I can do for you." His mouth clearly does not match what he says. See more »
For some reason I cannot stop thinking about this film lately.
You know that feeling of having seen it about 3 or 4 times in the last 12 months is not enough? That's what I feel at the moment.
I rate it as Mann's best. It's his most kinetic,vibrant(for a film mostly shot in steely blue),agonising,stirring,brash,violent and brilliance in such a simple story.
What games did you play as a young kid? Cops and robbers.Good guy.Bad guy.
We all know De Niro and Pacino could have been either main part,but can you imagine it any other way round. Pacino doing ice cool calm? De Niro the manic outbursts,arms flailing? It wouldn't work. We know these men now.We know neither will stop at what they do.And yet there is no way either would stop the other.Unless they had too. Which leads us too the characters. All of them.
This is an extended family where you feel you know all of them without knowing anything at all. The cops are similar to the robbers and vice-versa. Perhaps Mann is telling us were all the same.Except in what we do.Every speaking part holds substance in this movie, and the support cast is astonishing when you actually read the caliber of who appeared in this film.Tom Sizmore, Val Kilmer,Ashley Judd,Ted Levine,Wes Studi,Hank Azaria,William Fitchner,Henry Rollins,Dennis Haysbert,Tom Noonan. And Natalie Portman, for chrissake! Try getting that cast again.
A real 10/10 film. And that Moby song at the end(God moving over the face of waters) gets me every time.
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