6.5/10
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30 user 16 critic

Gang Related (1997)

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After murdering an undercover DEA agent, two corrupt cops scramble to cover up what they've done.

Director:

Jim Kouf

Writer:

Jim Kouf
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Jim Belushi ... Det. Frank Divinci (as James Belushi)
Tupac Shakur ... Det. Rodriguez
Lela Rochon ... Cynthia Webb
Dennis Quaid ... Joe Doe / William
James Earl Jones ... Arthur Baylor
David Paymer ... Elliot Goff
Wendy Crewson ... Helen Eden
Gary Cole ... Richard Simms
Terrence 'T.C.' Carson ... Manny Landrew
Brad Greenquist ... Richard Stein
James Handy ... Capt. Henderson
Kool Moe Dee Kool Moe Dee ... Lionel Hudd
Victor Love ... Hooper
Robert LaSardo ... Sarkasian
Perry Anzilotti ... Vic
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Storyline

Two corrupt cops murder an undercover DEA agent by mistake, and frantically try to cover their tracks by framing a homeless man for the crime. That involves juggling evidence, coaching witnesses, and improvising to keep their desperate scheme from unraveling. Written by <rozebud@compuserve.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Some cops play by the rules. Their own. See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for strong language, some violence and a scene with nudity | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

8 October 1997 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Criminal Intent See more »

Filming Locations:

Los Angeles, California, USA

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$3,286,065, 12 October 1997, Wide Release

Gross USA:

$5,790,448, 9 November 1997
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

DTS | Dolby Digital

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

This was Tupac Shakur's last film, and the first one given full theatrical release after his death on 13 September 1996. His other film, Bullet (1996) made prior to this one only received a limited theatrical run late in 1996 before being released on home video, just before this film was released theatrically in August 1997. See more »

Goofs

Before Frank pulls up to Manny's for the first time, you can see a blue sandbag on the curb, marking the spot where Jim Belushi is to stop the car at the proper spot so as to be within the camera frame. See more »

Quotes

[Baylor is questioning Cynthia Webb in court]
Helen Eden: Objection! Mr. Baylor is purposely trying to confuse the witness.
Arthur Baylor: I am NOT trying to confuse the witness; the WITNESS has been trying to confuse THIS COURT!
See more »

Crazy Credits

Dedicated to Tupac Shakur (1971-1996) See more »

Connections

Referenced in Gloria (1999) See more »

Soundtracks

Can't Fix It
Written by Chris Jackson
Performed by Jackers
Artist Courtesy of Buzztone Records
See more »

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User Reviews

By the numbers but made more enjoyable by many famous faces and several good performances
27 June 2004 | by bob the mooSee all my reviews

Detectives Divinci and Rodriguez are crooked cops involved in dealing drugs and murdering the competition. When one of their victims turns out to be an undercover DEA agent, they are put on the case to find the murderer. With DEA agent Richard Simms desperate to get the killer, Divinci and Rodriguez realize that they have to frame someone else for the crime. Settling on homeless man 'Joe', they give him drink, get him to sign a statement and falsify the evidence to make a strong enough case to convict.

I had half wanted to see this film for a few years simply because I am keen to take the few chances I have to try see Tupac acting – for me he was the saviour of Poetic Justice and he is much better than the vast majority of the hip hop 'actors' we have seen recently. The plot here is pretty much a standard thriller plot based around two dirty cops and, although it lacks real flair or imagination, it still manages to do its job and be an enjoyable and occasionally quite gritty little thriller. It could have done with a greater sense of tension though, for the majority of the time it merely unfolds as opposed to being fast paced or very exciting but it is still an enjoyable enough little film even if it pretty much goes where you expect it to.

The cast is a big factor in making this film more interesting and making it rise above the other genre films that it will be competing with on the bottom shelf. Belushi has been in more than his fair share of sh*t video thrillers but here he is actually quite good and seems comfortable with material that, although not great, is certainly nowhere near the low level that he is getting used to. In his last film, Tupac is great and he should be a role model for all hip hop stars who want to act – even just in the choice of role he gives a great example – can you imagine many other rappers playing a corrupt cop with as little glamour as Tupac had? Snoop is a fine example, his last few roles have been versions of the caricature he plays in his music and many other rappers do the same – trading on their image rather than acting. Tupac is far from his gangsta image and he delivers a very down to earth performance – as with several other of his films he made this better by his presence. The gorgeous Lela Rochon is given an eye candy role at the start but she is able enough to make a good performance out of it (as well as having a body and looks to die for!). The smaller roles add the feeling of cast depth even if some of them add little else. Quaid for example has so little to do you wonder why he bothered – he feels like he should be a bigger part of the film but he isn't. For the opposite reason Jones, Cole and Paymer are all quite good because they are minor roles and they just feel like quality padding.

Overall this is not a particularly earth shattering thriller but it does its job well enough and I found it pretty enjoyable. A well-known cast certainly helps to make the material rise slightly above the rest of its genre but it is a great performance by Tupac in a different role that made it for me; if only other rappers were less afraid of their image when making role choices then we may not be experiencing a wave of awful blaxploitation films all over again.


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