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there's a frog in my snake oil
1
A washed-up sheriff watches a bag change hands amongst tales of outlandish contraband in a smokey bar. He sees nothing amiss, as he knocks a pinball aimlessly around it's glittering cage. Because this is the town were New York's finest come to live, and all the faces are familiar protectors of the peace.

But underneath the sleepy safety which the sheriff would happily perceive, there's a whole den of thieves and murderers running around without reprieve.

On this particular night most of the cops are off celebrating a stag do, and it's only when a young nephew of an important cop drives off drunkenly that things start to go awry. After an unlawful killing the cover up begins, which by the end will have whole struts of certainty caving in.

A swathe of familiar swarthy faces crowd round this homely NYPD town. As Sylvester Stallone casts his droopy eyes over the smokey bar, Harvey Keitel runs the whole house of cards, with Robert Patrick and Ray Liotta playing structural parts. Robert Deniro is the fierce Internal Affairs officer doggedly on Keitel's case, and fresh-faced Michael Rapaport the nephew who causes complacency to be displaced.

The sheriff lumbers to the conclusion that all is not well in a way not dissimilar to Stallone's over-weight on-screen wanderings. And in this sense, what the plot somehow lacks in acceleration, it makes up for with a type of muffled anticipation. His partial deafness, from a past act of kindness, is used to good effect to both remind him of what he's lost and to mimick the blindness he's shown in his life.

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That said though, i would have liked something a bit stronger to kick through the sophoriphic sheen that was cast over both town and screen. I felt this was a good movie, well told, but the overall effect didn't inject a steely light of recognition into its well-filmed folds.

Perhaps it's all a fair representation of the ponderous fights which the sheriff's life evolves through. "Being right isn't a bullet proof jacket" he gets told, but that innocence is the gold in his heart we have to respect.

It wasn't deep, but it was kind of replete in it's own "small-town" way.

I give it: one shotgun, two bushy frowns, and a big okay.
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Originally Posted by Golgot
I give it: one shotgun, two bushy frowns, and a big okay.


I have always thought this was one of Sly’s best films. It made me look at him in a different light because he was so obviously trying to get back into meatier roles and re-establishing himself as an actor, and not just a star. Unfortunately, it backfired on him, and his career has never been the same since. I have always hated tough guy action movies (one man against an army) and also slasher films, so seeing Sly trying to break back into more believable roles was a blessing. If you like Sly and want to see another film where he does a 180, check out Oscar. It’s one of my favorite light-hearted comedies and has a wonderful ensemble cast including Peter Riegert, Chazz Palminteri, Don Ameche, Kurtwood Smith, Vincent Spano, Marisa Tomei, Harry Shearer, Ornella Muti, Tim Curry, and Kirk Douglas.
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"Today, war is too important to be left to politicians. They have neither the time, the training, nor the inclination for strategic thought. I can no longer sit back and allow Communist infiltration, Communist indoctrination, Communist subversion and the international Communist conspiracy to sap and impurify all of our precious bodily fluids."



Originally Posted by Golgot
I give it: one shotgun, two bushy frowns, and a big okay.

I hope that will be your official rating of movies from now on…

Anyway, Nice review... I haven't seen this one but if you say it is worth a shotgun, I'll check it out...

And I totally agree with Slay about Oscar... I love that one...
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AiSv Nv wa do hi ya do...
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Originally Posted by Caitlyn
And I totally agree with Slay about Oscar... I love that one...
i couldn't agree more...

oscar is one of the sly's best and his most overlooked...



Originally Posted by susan
i couldn't agree more...

oscar is one of the sly's best and his most overlooked...

Yes, I think Oscar is overlooked a lot, as is Assassins… I liked that one a lot too…



I found this film to be ahuge disappointment, with such a cast, I expected a whole lore than "an averae flick".



there's a frog in my snake oil
Originally Posted by Philmster
I found this film to be ahuge disappointment, with such a cast, I expected a whole lore than "an averae flick".
Yeah, it definitely lacks the kick i was expecting, and it hardly has any twists in its "tale". But the whale of a cast means it still swims along fairly well (even if it is a bit flabby )



I think some of the characters just didn't suit the names on them, Its a longtime since I saw it, but I remember feeling DeNiro was miscast??



there's a frog in my snake oil
Originally Posted by Philmster
I think some of the characters just didn't suit the names on them, Its a longtime since I saw it, but I remember feeling DeNiro was miscast??
He was under-used certainly.



Originally Posted by Philmster
I think some of the characters just didn't suit the names on them, Its a longtime since I saw it, but I remember feeling DeNiro was miscast??
Giving De Niro, say Kietell's role, would have changed it from being Stallone's break-out role, to a De Niro/Stallione movie. I think De Niro keeping with a smaller role suited the purpose of the movie well.



there's a frog in my snake oil
Shouldn't the purpose of a movie be to make the best movie possible tho, not to showcase the acting skills of one actor amongst many? Especially not if it's Sly . Not that i think he did a bad job - just more that i suspect that this is one of the few serious roles he could pull off effectively. And one of the problems i had with the film was the way the whole film's style was wrapped around the preponderances of his character - and as such was a bit ponderous. I liked the way it was done. It was just a bit numb in someways.



Registered User
I think de niro was cast correctly in that role, it suited his style well although he could have done with a spot more screen time to be fair. I thought sly played his part extremely well as did the rest of the cast but the story could have been a tad meatier.



This film is generally regarded as Sylvester Stallone's finest hour and I couldn't agree more. He really proved to be an actor of substance here.