As new ideas continue to seem a rarity in Hollywood, audiences are made to choose between a modernized version of an old movie or a new movie with recycled plot lines. For example, take the corrupt cop theme of ‘Training Day’, with which these new flicks share some similarities. We’ve seen it done many times over, and it isn’t getting any better with each movie.
For the last three decades, the Rampart Division of the L.A.P.D. has come to represent police corruption and the abuse of power. It served as the inspiration behind such films as ‘Colors’, ‘Training Day’ and the FX series ‘The Shield’. The latest entry once again imagines a police drama about this small, densely-populated area of downtown Los Angeles. Woody Harrelson plays a cop on the edge of madness, and he looks great in the role, like a good mix of Denzel Washington’s coolness with a tinge of Nicolas Cage’s over-acting. The film looks interesting, but the whole “Watch a peace officer in a downward spiral and driven into self-destruction” plot is starting to wear kind of thin. I’ll wait for the Blu-ray on this one.
Daniel Espinosa makes his U.S. debut with this exciting action thriller – or at least, the preview makes it look exciting and action-packed. Although it has nothing to do with bad cops or policing the streets of L.A., the movie appears to share some vaguely familiar plot devices before erupting into an espionage caper. First, Mr. Washington almost seems to be reprising his role as Alonzo Harris, even so far as taking under his wing a rookie looking for some action. That would Ryan Reynolds filling the Ethan Hawke role, for anyone paying attention. Once Washington starts explaining the rules of the game, I have to wonder if I really want to watch this at all. I like Denzel, so I’ll likely give it a rent once it’s released for the home video market.
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