Saturday, April 29, 2006

Ethan Hawke, Laurence Fishburne, Ja Rule, Brian Dennehy, Drea de Matteo, Gabriel Byrne, Maria Bello, Matt Craven, John Leguizamo

"Unite and fight."

Precinct 13

A remake of John Carpenter's 1976 film, it is set on New Year's Eve (2004)at a soon to be demolished precinct in chilly Detroit. It is being manned by Roenick, the sergeant in charge, Jasper an old cop who will be retiring and Iris, the secretary. Soon enough during that dark chilly icestorm, they are joined by a bunch of prisoners who make a stop to spend the night at Precinct 13 to wait till morning when the storm subsides. Among the prisoners is Marion Bishop, a notorious gangster played superbly by the impeccable Laurence Fishburne. Soon enough the action starts when certain elements want to kill aforementioned gangster before he testifies about their criminal activities. To defend themselves, the good guys (cops) team up with the bad guys (prisoners) and stand united against the massive assault on precinct 13.
Ethan Hawke delivers a good performance, his morose angst ridden frame projects well as the pill popping cop with a past. Laurence Fishburne is always good and he masterfully becomes the character he portrays. Gabriel Byrne in a small yet vital role is always a gripping presence on screen. The supporting cast all contribute well to this overall compelling action drama.
A suspenseful action movie with a couple of witty lines, good ensemble cast, well directed, the pace fluctuates between a lull to full blown violence (many are shot point blank in the head) and noisy gun fires. I have no idea if it stuck to the original plot of John Carpenter but overall I'd say it builds up enough excitement to keep you glued till the very end.

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