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To Live and Die in L.A. (1985)

A fearless Secret Service agent will stop at nothing to bring down the counterfeiter who killed his partner.

Director:

William Friedkin

Writers:

Gerald Petievich (novel), William Friedkin (screenplay) | 1 more credit »

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3 wins. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
William Petersen ... Richard Chance (as William L. Petersen)
Willem Dafoe ... Eric Masters
John Pankow ... John Vukovich
Debra Feuer ... Bianca Torres
John Turturro ... Carl Cody
Darlanne Fluegel ... Ruth Lanier (as Darlanne Fleugel)
Dean Stockwell ... Bob Grimes
Steve James ... Jeff Rice
Robert Downey Sr. ... Thomas Bateman (as Robert Downey)
Michael Greene ... Jim Hart
Christopher Allport ... Max Waxman
Jack Hoar Jack Hoar ... Jack
Valentin de Vargas ... Judge Filo Cedillo (as Val DeVargas)
Dwier Brown ... Doctor
Michael Chong ... Thomas Ling
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Storyline

Working largely in cases of counterfeiting, LA based Secret Service agent Richie Chance exhibits reckless behavior which according to his longtime and now former partner Jimmy Hart will probably land him in the morgue before he's ready to retire. That need for the thrill manifests itself in his personal life by his love of base jumping. Professionally, it is demonstrated by the fact that he is sextorting a parolee named Ruth Lanier, who feeds him information in return for him not sending her back to prison for some trumped up parole violation. With his new partner John Vukovich, Chance is more determined than ever, based on recent circumstances, to nab known longtime counterfeiter Ric Masters, who is more than willing to use violence against and kill anyone who crosses him. Masters is well aware that the Secret Service is after him. Masters' operation is somewhat outwardly in disarray, with Chance being able to nab his mule, Carl Cody, in the course of moving some of the fake money, ... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Detroit, Chicago, New York, Miami were like this! This is THE CITY OF ANGELS! This is L.A. See more »


Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English | Arabic | Spanish

Release Date:

1 November 1985 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Vivir y morir en Los Ángeles See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$6,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$3,551,761, 1 November 1985

Gross USA:

$17,307,019
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (TV)

Sound Mix:

Dolby

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

A year after the film came out, John Pankow met an undercover NYPD cop in a coffee shop who told John that his panicking during the highway chase scene was a completely accurate and realistic response to such a situation. See more »

Goofs

Ruth tells Chance that Lin is coming in on Amtrak train number 11, which is the correct train number for the train coming from San Francisco (the Coast Starlight). When Lin arrives at L.A. Union Station and is paged, he is paged as arriving on Amtrak train number 708. See more »

Quotes

Richard Chance: Remember me? Football game at the airport?
See more »

Crazy Credits

Right at the end, after the credits, there is a shot of William Petersen's face See more »


Soundtracks

Lookin' Good
Performed by Magic Sam
Courtesy of Delmark Records
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User Reviews

 
A Great, Little Known Gem!
17 April 2004 | by cinebuff-3See all my reviews

There are 'Cop films'. 'Buddy' films and 'Partner' films. This one is definitely in the 'Partner' category. With the same kind of magic that Gene Hackman and Roy Scheider shared in Freidken's 'The French Connection'... I just picked up and watched 'To Live And Die In L.A.' on DVD and had my socks knocked off for the umpteenth time!... Those expecting a standard, cookie cutter 'Cops & Robbers' film should go elsewhere. Friedken pulled out all the stops on this one! Taking a small budget and a clutch of then No-Name actors. Planting them in the sections of L.A. no one ever sees. And allowed them free rein to improvise, romp and play. And then, create some of their best work!.. William Petersen plays Secret Service Agent Rick Chance. Who hunts Artists/Conterfeiter/Con, Eric Masters. Played with clever, evil glee by Willem Dafoe, with a passion just short of Psychosis... The segments showing Dafoe making 'Funny Money' are as detailed and astounding as the scenes of him violently tidying up loose ends!... Toss in great location shots. A few startling chases. And a 'conscience' for Petersen, played by John Pankow as John Vukovich. A three-piece, by-the-book agent. Who follows his partner through the Counterfiet World of assorted crime, mayhem, and dirty deals. Into Dante's Inferno. Only to fully evolve in the last fifteen minutes of the film. That must be seen to believe!...


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