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Terry Martin is the false name of an undercover cop posing as a fence to burrow into a gang run by Simon Bacig. After six months, Terry is closing in when Simon invites him to a party and tells him to bring his wife. His boss assigns him a rookie cop, Susan Reece, fresh from a data job in Kansas City. Terry wants her in and out the same night, but she wants a permanent assignment so she contrives to get Simon's attention. Terry must now pretend to live with her. Within a few days, the FBI warns Terry that Simon may have an informant within the police department, Terry discovers he really likes Susan, and he learns that she already knows Simon. Who's in danger from whom? Written by
Better than your typical direct-to-video cop thriller
All of the warning signs are there from frame one: an opening sequence that intercuts between shots of the movie and the credits on a black screen, mobsters fresh out of movie mobster school, and unnecessary cross dissolves from one scene to the next. And then of course there are the fellow police officers who yell at one another most of the time, whether it be the captain admonishing the hero for taking too much time on the case or the hero and his new partner who don't see eye to eye.
I figured at the very least if I stuck around, I would be treated to some gratuitous nudity courtesy of the beautiful Jennifer Esposito. Unfortunately that didn't happen, yet I found myself being absorbed by the developing relationship between her character and the undercover cop played by Nick Moran.
There are some nice moments that elevate the film above its direct-to-video trappings. A scene where Esposito places a banana to her ear as if it were a phone has such a genuineness and spontaneity that it doesn't come off as a cheap attempt at humor but as an actual moment involving real people.
The two leads deserve a lot of credit for making this movie what it is. Nick Moran has a certain star quality, a charisma that holds the viewer with him. He gives everything he has in this performance, particularly midway through the film when his psyche is tortured after having been forced to assassinate an enemy of the mobster he's trying to bring down. It's almost as if he didn't get the memo letting him know that this was direct-to-video garbage and that he really need not try so hard. Fortunately for the film and the viewer he does.
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