A cab driver finds himself the hostage of an engaging contract killer as he makes his rounds from hit to hit during one night in Los Angeles. He must find a way to save both himself and one last victim.
Sometime in the 1970's, police officers from New York wanted a safe haven to live, away from the dangers of the streets of New York, this is when they established a "Cop Land" in the small New Jersey town of Garrison. Freddy Heflin who was always admired by the New York cops wanted to become one, but because he was deaf in one ear this prevents him from achieving his goal, but has become sheriff of Garrison. Recently there have been a dark omen surrounding the NYPD, and Freddy is now investigating on this case, then Internal Affairs officer Mo Tilden is also on the case and asks Freddy for help, but Freddy could not. Now Freddy suspects that a New York cop named Ray Donlan might be one of the many cops who is corrupted by the mob and other criminals. Now, Freddy must find a cop who is nicknamed "Superboy" who can testify against Donlan and protect him, before Donlan finds Superboy and kills him. Written by
Many people see Silvester Stallone as just another action movie hero who can't do anything but that. However, unlike other action movie stars, (Schwarzenegger, Van Damme, Seigal etc..) Stallone made his breakthrough with a movie that wasn't really an action movie at heart. He gave forth an excellent performance in Rocky and set a standard for himself that just seemed to fall and fall as his career progressed. He starred in cheesy action movie role after cheesy action movie role until finally people began associating him with nothing but that. Now finally, over twenty years after Rocky, Stallone comes back and shows people that he can be more than an action hero if he wants to. Stallone's performance in Cop Land shows vulnerability, anger, admiration, fear and many other emotions that were rarely present in any of his movie except Rocky. I'm sorry to say that I was one of the many people who took Cop Land for granted when it came to theaters simply because I didn't believe Stallone could do anything but cheesy action movies. Today, I finally rented it out of pure curiosity and was shocked at how far I was from the truth.
Cop Land is a very well made film about a small town that corrupt New York City cops have made their haven. Stallone plays the sheriff of the town, Freddy Heflin, who wanted to be NYPD but couldn't due to a hearing disorder. When Murray 'Superboy' Babitch (Michael Rapaport) shoots and kills two drugged up teenagers when he mistakes a steering wheel club for a gun in a high speed chase, his friends come in to help him. But their far-fetched plan starts to come down on them when Moe Tilden (Robert De Niro) from Internal Affairs begins investigating Superboy's alleged suicide. Things begin to go seriously wrong from here and Freddy is caught right in the middle. I thought that Stallone would have been upstaged by all his great co-stars like Harvey Keitel, Ray Liotta and Robert De Niro, but I was wrong. Stallone comes out perfectly as an aging cop with smashed dreams faced with a moral dilemma he doesn't know how to solve. In many ways he idolizes these big time New York cops but he knows that many of the things they do are wrong. In many ways Stallone's performance is far superior to that of his co-stars as he exhibits more depth and character development than any of them.
Cop Land is a somewhat unknown gem that many people overlooked for the wrong reasons. If you have any interest in the genre I would highly recommend it. Cop Land is probably the second best police murder/crime drama I've seen, only behind L.A. Confidential. At times the story has something to be desired and unlike L.A. Confidential is drags in some parts but the fantastic performances by every cast member more than make up for these minor flaws. I give Cop Land 8 stars out of 10.
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