A police sergeant must rally the cops and prisoners together to protect themselves on New Year's Eve, just as corrupt policeman surround the station with the intent of killing all to keep their deception in the ranks.
Police ambush and kill several gang members in Los Angeles. Gang members make a pact of blood to strike back at police, and conduct a siege on the police station which is almost abandoned and due to be closed. Staff of the closing precinct and the criminals being held there while in transit must work together to fight off the attacking gang members.Written by
Scott McKenna <email@example.com>
When Wells hot wires the car and speeds away, the director shows the audience a long insert of a car rapidly traveling a dirt road. The car is at least two blocks away before the gang member in the back seat shoots Wells with a silenced rifle. Yet Wilson, Bishop, and Leigh clearly see and hear the killing but rationalize the sound as perhaps a window breaking. See more »
[Wells and Wilson decide who will escape to go for help]
We haven't even flipped the coin yet.
I'm gonna lose.
You got a bad attitude, Wells.
I ALWAYS lose. Had bad luck all my life. How do you think I ended up in here?
Maybe your luck will change.
It might... If we don't flip a coin.
[...] See more »
This is rightly considered a classic cult movie from the 1970's by the once reliable John Carpenter (who also composed the edgy early synth score). Basically it's a faint mish-mash of other movies, the dialogue is reminiscent of great westerns as a black policeman and a white convict battle against gang members in a Night of The Living Dead re-working. It's also tempting to draw Vietnam allegories (as with many American movies of the mid 1970's and after); the faceless, nameless gang members die in the droves but keep attacking the besieged police station and the lawmen and the lawbreakers, black and white, must unite to defeat them and escape with their lives.
The real joy of this movie, however, is the playing of the two virtually unknown leads, Austin Stoker and the late Darwin Joston. They have a great, almost wry chemistry and use Carpenter's stripped-down witty dialogue to great effect. Because there are no 'stars', there are no real expectations, and the shocks when they come (including the famous ice cream sequence) are more shocking for it.
The representation of women leaves a little to be desired (the two female characters obviously shop at the same sweater store!) but the character Lee shows some inner strength and resolve, and even has time for some kind of upper hand in terms of sexual tension between herself and Joston's Napoleon Wilson.
If you haven't seen this movie I urge you to watch it; in terms of B movies and cult thrillers it's the yardstick in my opinion; simple, stylish, violent, witty and not remotely sentimental.
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