In the crime-ridden 70's New York City, two cops have had enough. They, along with few other disgruntled people decide to take the things into their own hands only to realize too late that they're in over their heads.
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Based on a true story, this action-packed, hard-hitting depiction of the infamous Ashley gang - who terrorized the southeast in the 1920's - also illustrates a desperate love between two people destined for destruction.
During the 1970s, New York City is plagued by a wave of crimes. Fed up with the situation and with the police's inaction, friends Willie and Cy complain to the local police precinct. Police captain Ed Malloy explains that his forces are stretched thin and cannot be everywhere all the time. He suggests that residents from various neighborhoods join the Police Auxiliary Force and patrol their own neighborhoods themselves. Willie and Cy organize a large group of volunteers from their neighborhood into a police auxiliary force. They are issued with uniforms and batons but no firearms. However, the resourceful men get hold of various personal firearms and even manage to obtain a few walkies-talkies. Later, Cy obtains a disused police car and paints the auxiliary police insignia on it. The patrol car also has a police radio installed. During the day, Willie and Cy go to their normal day jobs but at night they meet the other auxiliary policemen and patrol the streets of their neighborhood. ... Written by
Having not seen this film for over 20 years, and remembering how great it was as a kid seeing it on cable, I was very happy (and surprised!) to see it released on DVD and picked it up immediately. I discovered it was a lot funnier when I was a kid, although making up for that was watching two great stars like Carroll and Ernest, as well as all the NYC locations, as I've always been a fan of NYC films, my hometown.
One interesting thing is, this being a motion picture, Carroll O'Connor is upstaged in every scene by movie star Ernest Borgnine. And not that Carroll is bad, not at all, he's actually decent, and the two actors make a good pair with some good chemistry (a re-pairing in a future film would have been great even!). But on the silver screen Carroll doesn't have the immense presence he has on the tube as Archie Bunker, and Ernest is clearly the "leader" here.
The two head an auxiliary police force to battle the crime in their neighborhood. It's obvious a pre-Rudy Giuliani New York City, NYC being quite legendary in the 70's for it's high crime and smut. NYC isn't cast in the best light, but then again, in 1974 it just wasn't in the best light yet. (Thanks Rudy for all you've done!) Like "Cooley High," it's a bit odd to see such a downbeat ending in a comedy, but it's still a good viewing.
If you like NYC films, and want to see two old pros do their thing and take the young'uns to school, "Law and Disorder" is a good DVD buy, before it goes out of print.
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