Wholeheartedly this movie is endorsed. It has a level of violence that far exceeds what was the norm twenty or even ten years ago. But the writing is crisp, and reminiscent of “Pulp Fiction”, as we hear the two leads, Denzel Washington and Mark Wahlberg, bantering back and forth in the beginning of the movie.
It’s best not to pay attention to every detail, but only to know that this is a film with several plot twists and the two leads carry off a remarkably watchable version of the conventional buddy cop movie. And that is no small feat in this day and age of rock ‘em, sock ‘em style action films
The story centers around the events unfolding after the two men hold up a bank early in the film. From that point, the action moves the plot at a fairly rapid pace, but it’s not so disjointed that you cannot comprehend or go along with the storyline unfolding. There are bad guys and noted supporting roles, first with Edward James Olmos who plays “Papi”, a Mexican drug lord. And there’s an impressive performance from Bill Paxton, who is terrifyingly convincing as a “heavy” in this film.
Denzel Washington portrays an undercover DEA agent. He is never better in this part playing an older, yet still driven law enforcement officer who befriends Mark Wahlberg. There is too much that can spoil this plot to go into details, but it’s worth a visit to the theater to see this one. And lately, that has not been the case for many movie releases.
Although the film has received mixed reviews, most notably for the amount of violence seen, it has the added advantage of a well-scripted story and two appealing leads to bring this one above the level of “just average” in summer film fare