Here's an old Arnold Schwarzenegger movie from the heyday of gritty tough guy movies like this one.
It's the story of a former FBI agent turned small-town sheriff, who goes undercover with the Chicago mafia to help a friend, whose kid they've killed, and when that friend's shot up as well it turns into a real personal vendetta.
The showdown's brutal. No mercy. No long-drawn dialog. No stereotypes in action, and authentic-looking (and probably authentic) stunts. It's refreshingly gritty when it matters, and the action's never far away. The bonds between characters are easy to understand, and maybe it's also their simplicity that make them feel believable. There are plenty of other faces you'll recognize from the time period too, like Paul Shenar, Robert Davi and Ed Lauter, and they do a good job at providing that gritty, underground, criminal vibe that goes with their villainy.
As you know acting isn't really Arnold's strong point - or at least it wasn't back then, but the relations in this movie are relations that work, and it's not those you're watching this for anyway, it's the raw deal. The embodiment of authentic gunblazing eighties type action with no frills, and Arnold - the perfect protagonist for this blend of film. If that's what you're looking for, this is exactly that.
rated 4/5: fo shizzle
I've been confusing this one with Red Heat for the longest time. Finally I watched both of them back to back to properly tell them apart, so here it is: my review for this other one of the two movies...
It's awesome eighties action again!. Arnold in his prime. This is the one with the bulldozers; the other the one with the buses. This the one where he plays a gangster; the other where he's Russian. This is the grittier one, and the other the slightly more realistic. This is pretty much all-out-action, while the other is part thriller.
Both deal with drug trade though, both are cops and robbers movies, and in both of them he goes undercover. Both are pretty similar after all... and they're both great as well.
Though this one begins in a cheesy way compared to the other it feels like it catches up, and goes past the other towards the end. It doesn't feel as polished as the other, but it's definitely the one with the most action out of the two. Not all realistic, but it's got that kind of firepower where things really get shot up. Great movie, and even outside the action Arnold's a pretty tough dude. A real G. Also as in: great watch.
rated 4/5: fo shizzle