A family's moral codes are tested when Ray Tierney investigates a case that reveals an incendiary police corruption scandal involving his own brother-in-law. For Ray, the truth is revelatory, a Pandora's Box that threatens to upend not only the Tierney legacy but the entire NYPD.
A family of police officers - patriarch, two sons, and a son-in-law - deals with corruption in a precinct in Washington Heights. Four officers die in an ambush at a drug dealer's apartment. It's brother Francis's precinct, so when the investigation led by brother Ray finds hints of police corruption, there's pressure to close ranks and save Frankie's career. Dad, a police brass, promises Ray that he and Frankie can clean things up, and Ray should focus on catching the drug dealer who killed the cops. Meanwhile, brother-in-law Jimmy, a hothead and an enforcer, is visited at home by a lowlife. Is Jimmy involved in the corruption? Where can this take the family? Written by
Nick Nolte was originally cast as Francis Tierney, Sr., but an old knee injury flared up and Nolte found himself unable to perform when he came to the set. See more »
Where Raymond and Francis, Sr. are in the bathroom, Francis urges Raymond to join the Task Force. Francis removes towels from the dispenser. In the next two subsequent shots, the position of the towels at the dispenser has changed. See more »
A bit slumberous and uneven but still a solid and compelling police thriller
STAR RATING: ***** Saturday Night **** Friday Night *** Friday Morning ** Sunday Night * Monday Morning
When four police officers are brutally gunned down in a run down, drug infested tower block, it sets a deadly chain of events in motion that threaten to tear apart the brotherly structure of the New York Police Department. Honest cop Ray Tierney (Edward Norton) starts with the proper approach, getting a statement from an eye witness to what may have gone on in the shape of an innocent, unlying child who admits to having seen notorious drug dealer Angel Tezo (Ramon Rodriguez) fleeing from the scene in fear. With what happened starting to look fairly obvious, the hunt begins for Tezo. Unfortunately, that includes less honest cops Jimmy Egan (Colin Farrell), related to Ray through marriage, and his men whose corrupt activities have lead to the murders. It all builds up to a devastating battle between family and friends, loyalty and justice, truth and honour.
As any one who's glanced at the trivia section (or Empire Magazine!) will already know, work on Pride and Glory was scheduled to begin as far back as 2001, but owing to America's characteristically patriotic respect for NY cops who risked their lives to save lives that fateful day, any suggestion of corruption amongst them was deemed, well, unpatriotic and it's been left till seven years later for the film to come out. It would appear the most high profile film to come from writer/director Gavin O' Connor, whose other credits appear a smattering of unheard of films that have skipped the sort of exposure this one's got.
Though a few have claimed the film has been done before (which it surely has), it is still far more than a standard, straight-forward cop thriller, with an intelligent, twisty turny screenplay that keeps you hooked with it's developments and raw honesty. Despite this, the narrative flow fails to keep going as well as you'd like, and a fair few scenes gracelessly flow on from the last one rather than keeping you hooked for them. Also on the plus side are strong, solid performances from leading men Norton and Farrell, not to mention Jon Voight and Noah Emmerich as the other honest, well meaning father/son cop team caught up in the middle of the corrupt shenanigans as everyone else. But Norton and Farrell not only have good presence, they have good chemistry together and it's a shame they're scenes together are too few. Another down point is their climactic fisticuffs session, which feels corny and out of place amongst what has been a raw, unflinching, brutally and unsearingly honest cop film up till now, belonging more at the end of a Jet Li or Chuck Norris movie to be honest.
Still, this is a solid, well made cop thriller that was still quite worth the wait. ***
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