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Ex-detective Dave Robicheaux has made a new life for himself and his wife Annie running a bait shop in the outskirts of New Orleans. When they save a little girl, the sole survivor of a plane crash, their lives become forever changed. They take the orphan child into their home and prepare to raise her. However, a visit from DEA agent Dautrieve brings out the detective instincts in Robicheaux and he begins to ask about the rest of the passengers. This brings trouble to Robicheaux and he turns to drug lord Bubba Rocque, a childhood friend. But the friendship becomes estranged when an assault on the Robicheaux home leaves one victim...Annie. Written by
P. Wong <email@example.com>
Ex-cop and ex-drunk Dave Robicheaux has got his life back and makes a living selling bait outside New Orleans with his wife Annie. When they witness a plane crash into the river, Dave saves a little girl and they decide to keep her since she has been orphaned. However, when they then get a visit from the DEA and some local heavies it is apparent that the plane was doing more than just carrying a few illegals and soon Dave finds his new life rapidly crumbling around him.
Opening with a stylish and atmospheric semi to-camera confession, this film immediately caught my interest and managed to hold throughout despite not actually being that good. The film is set in the Deep South and is full or rather annoying mannerisms and clichés from that area that put me off a bit. Despite this, I still quite enjoyed it; the plot meanders out of control a bit and involves too many characters to really keep a tight emotional grip on the audience but it still have enough grit and tension to it to keep you watching. Some elements are better than others though - when the film focuses on Dave and his tough investigation it is great; but when it tries to expand (eg with Robin) it just comes across as baggy.
The film hasn't got massive action scenes but it does have some good chases and moments of thrills - most notably a roof top chase across New Orleans. These are fine but the film does too much talking in slow southern drawls for my liking - also making the film feel a lot longer than it probably was! The talking is fine, but it does more than enough to set the tone and action - and then it keeps talking! Combine this with the characters and you have a film that can't help but feel baggy and slightly disjointed.
The one thread that holds it all together though is Baldwin. He gives a great performance across the whole film; dealing well with the various emotions that it throws at him. Roberts is OK, certainly better than some other rubbish I've seen him in. Lynch is given little to do but look good in a bikini; Masterson is not cast well and doesn't fit into the trashy stripper role; Hatcher gets naked and looks good but her character is not dealt with that well by the script. The support cast includes Hall and Guilfoyle but this is Baldwin's film and, for it's other faults, he carries it with him. The direction is also good; using some very good shots to up the tension and the pace of the film at key moments - if only the editor had been a bit more persistent though.
Overall this is a tough noir-ish thriller that works well for the majority despite feeling bogged down by dialogue and characters at times. If you can put up with the heavy Southern drawls and the iced-tea clichés then it is worth a look.
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