Director: Antoine Fuqua
Genre: Drama/ Crime/ Thriller
Runtime: 132 minutes
Starring: Richard Gere, Don Cheadle, Ethan Hawke, Wesley Snipes, Vincent D’Onofrio, Lili Taylor, Will Patton, Ellen Barkin, Jesse Williams, Logan Marshall-Green
Description: Three unconnected Brooklyn cops wind up at the same deadly location after enduring vastly different career paths.
Review: Antoine Fuqua showed us the tough reality of cops and the street life in “Training Day”. Ethan Hawke, who was also in “Training Day”, stars in “Brooklyn’s Finest, together with Richard Gere and Don Cheadle. It’s a cop drama, but not standard: violent, without compromise and gritty as hell.
The effective intro sets the mood. The movie opens with criminal Carlo and cop Sal, in a parked car. The conversation isn’t important, but you can conclude that Sal needs money. He breaks the law for that. Then we meet cop Eddie, who wakes up and drinks a glass of whiskey right before he is about to start the last seven days of being a cop. Last we meet undercover cop Tango who, while driving a BMW, enters an apartment in the projects in Brooklyn with some gang members. It appears that a young dealer has just been shot by a cop.
This is the setup to the film and we shift between those three storylines. We follow them for a week and sometimes the stories intertwine. It gives you better insights in all the characters. For instance Sal, who needs to support his five children, and two on the way. Everyday there is the temptation of taking drug money that is found at the scene of the crime. Sal starts to take more risks. Ethan Hawke really impresses in his role. Eddie is set to pass on his experience to some new rookies. Richard Gere plays his role very subtle, he is a broken man. I liked seeing Gere in a role like this. Don Cheadle is undercover detective Tango and probably has the most interesting role. He managed to infiltrate and become friends with local drug lord Caz, played by Wesley Snipes. He is on the point of a break through and a promotion, so he can say goodbye to being an undercover agent. But his connection with Caz make the thin line between good and bad even thinner.
“Brooklyn’s Finest” is an above average cop drama, that doesn’t succeed because of its plot, but because of the strong cast and the anguished atmosphere. It’s an overlooked movie, that deserves more credit.
Rating: 3,5/ 5