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A San Francisco detective (Elliott) goes wild when he discovers his partner dead and the presumed culprit standing over him. After beating the man to death, he comes to his senses and realizes that he has to get rid of the body of the beaten man. Dumping the man in the river, he returns to his partner's body and calls in the death. He is then given a new partner (Morales) and is assigned to investigate the death of a man just pulled from the river causing all the expected problems. However, the investigation does lead to police corruption and his own partner's involvement in drug running. Written by
John Sacksteder <email@example.com>
**SPOILERS** Extremely brutal police drama set in San Francisco involving a sting operation that goes terribly wrong. A cop Det. Falon, Sam Elliott,mistakenly and savagely beats to death an undercover policeman Winch, Mike Watson,thinking that he murdered his partner Det. Sam Levinson, Mike Burstyn. A partner who unknowing to Falon was dirty.
Getting the lowdown that a group of policemen under his command are dealing drugs by knocking off drug dealers of their cocaine and heroin and then selling it back to them Captain Delgoti, Paul Sorvino, sets up a number of sting operations in his precinct with one of the cops targeted being Det. Levinson. Levinson's partner Det. Falon who's as honest as the day is long has no idea of Levinson's corruption. When Det. Falon find's his partner Det. Levinson stabbed to death outside a bar, were they were at drinking the night away, he goes nuts and attacks and beats to death the man on the scene Winch. Winch who was not responsible for Levinson's murder was in fact there to get him to turn and gives up the names of his fellow drug-dealing corrupt cops.
With the help of striper and girlfriend Sally, Mimi Craven, Falon has Winch's body put in a car and drives down to the docks dumping it in San Francisco Bay feeling that the "cop killer" got just what he deserved. What Falon doesn't know is that the two cops later put on the case of Leinson's murder Holloway & Orlanski, Dan Lauria & Richard Gilliland, were the one's who murdered him.
It's not until much later that Falon realizes that his partner was dirty when he was assigned together with rookie detective Michael Murrow, Esai Morales, on the Winch case and tries to cover-up his involvement in Winch's death. Falon's new partner senses that he's anything but interested in finding Winch's killer and slowly puts two and two together.
The two dirty cops, Holloway & Orlaski, trying to cover up their role in both Levinson murder, whom they killed fearing that he's about to turn evidence on them, as well as their drug dealings. The two crooked cops set up ex-con Jerome Johnson, Perry Moore, by breaking into his apartment and planting drugs there and then, to make it look like a drug hit, brutally murdering him and his wife! This happens right in front of the couples two year old son in one of the most shocking and sickening murders scenes ever put in a movie.
Not satisfied with killing Levinson and Johnson, together with his wife, Holloway and Orlanski get to Falon's girlfriend Sally, who was a junkie and being supplied with her drugs by the late Det. Levinson. The two corrupt cops stick a needle in Sally's arm forcing her to overdose not realizing, by sticking the needle in her left arm, that she's left-handed! Which would make it physically impossible and which also alerts Falon, who finds her body, that Sally was in fact murdered and didn't kill herself voluntary or by accident.
Falon begins to come to his senses when he's later approached at his old watering hole by Holloway and Orlanski and asked to join them in their drug dealing operation. Falon angrily refuses but now he knows that like his partner the late Sam Levinson that he knows too much and is now a marked man.
Meanwhile Det. Murrow, now a lot smarter and wiser, by getting to know what his partner Falon is all about confronts Falon about Winch's death only to get knocked out and cuffed to a sink at the bar that Falon was at. With Falon now smashed from his drinking, but with a full head of steam, goes outside to meet Holloway and Orlanski knowing that no matter what happens he'll end up on the losing end.
Tough and uncompromising movie about police corruption with Sam Elliott as the old veteran who thinks he's seen and knows everything about crime and police work but has a lot to learn. Still he overlooks his partners Det. Levinson, whom he worked with for 20 years, secret life as a drug dealer that not only leads to him murdering an innocent man but ending up being killed himself.
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