Sunday, January 24, 2010


Samuel L. Jackson, Patrick Wilson, Kerry Washington

"What could be safer than living next to a cop?"


Well to answer the question above, you won't feel safe at all if your neighbor is Abel Turner (Samuel L. Jackson), a LAPD police officer with racial issues. The setting is in California, a married couple, Lisa (Kerry Washington) and Chris Mattson (Patrick Wilson) move into a supposedly peaceful suburban community called Lakeview Terrace. Once they are nicely settled in, cop Turner reveals his true colors. He is uncomfortable with their interracial relationship and proceeds to make their lives miserable. He hounds them with all kinds of disturbances. But the couple feel powerless as he represents law enforcement and more often than not he gets away with his ugly behavior.

This film unfolds amidst the backdrop of the California forest fires. A tension filled story about "good neighborliness" in a small community. It is a bit predictable but you keep watching till the end just to see if and how the couple face up to their irritating neighbor.

Samuel L. Jackson is in his elements as the relentless racist cop dealing with personal demons. You can't really say for sure if he was bad and evil from the get go or if his personal tragedy turned him into a guy dealing with a lot of resentment and bitterness. Patrick Wilson (in his usual rigid acting style) and Kerry Washington have good chemistry as the harassed couple. You feel a certain degree of sympathy for their plight. They have their plate full with simmering marital issues to handle so they really don't need an unpleasant neighbor to mess up their lives.

Overall, a good solid plot about suburban life with believable characters who are just trying to live in peace. What more can we really ask for?

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