All his life, Leonard (Joshua Leonard, Humpday (2009)) has dreamed of being a famous filmmaker, but he's better at making excuses than making art. A chance encounter with a wasted A-list ... See full summary »
Dave Brown is a Los Angeles police officer who works out of the Rampart Division. Dave is misogynistic, racist, brutally violent, egotistical and a womanizer, although he defends himself against many of these accusations as he says that his hate is equal opportunity. However unlawful, he uses intimidation and brutal force to defend his ideals. The most notorious of his actions is purportedly murdering a suspected serial date rapist, which is why he has been given the nickname "Date Rape Dave". He lives with two of his ex-wives - sisters Barbara and Catherine - in an effort to keep family together, namely his two daughters, Helen and Margaret, who each have a different sister as their mother. Dave still maintains a sexual relationship with both sisters - whenever the mood suits any of them - while he openly has other sexual relationships. His life is put under a microscope after he is caught on video brutally beating a person with who he got into an automobile crash. This situation is ... Written by
At the beginning of the film, the screen is black and a graphic states "Los Angeles 1999" As the film fades into a wide shot overview of the hamburger stand, a 2005 Cadillac CTS drives through the intersection. See more »
[giving driving lessons]
You aim for the shortest wetback and watch him skedaddle. Plow the dice and the Schlitz Malt Liquor cans. And hit your siren as well. Let's see what we got...
[accelerates into pedestrians]
[screeches to a halt]
You'll get the hang of it.
Aren't you worried?
Getting a 1-28?
Okay, listen, this is the most important thing I've told you so far. Everything you learned at the academy - bullshit. Illegal is just a sick bird. Just a military occupation, kid. Emergency law....
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'Bear in mind that I am not a racist. Fact is, I hate all people equally.'
This film would be almost intolerable were it not for the fact that it is based on incidents that happened in 1999 in the Rampart Division of the LAPD, incidents still unresolved. Writer James Ellroy examined the corruption of the police force and came up with this quasi-true story. According to Ellroy, 'I am a master of fiction. I am also the greatest crime writer who ever lived. I am to the crime novel in specific what Leo Tolstoy is to the Russian novel and what Ludwig van Beethoven is to music.' What happens on the screen in this film is best viewed with a bit of Xanax on board along with an anti-nausea medication. Oren Moverman co-wrote the screenplay and directs.
David Douglas Brown (Woody Harrelson in a one man powerhouse of a performance) is a veteran Los Angeles police officer, one of the last of the renegade cops who works out of the Rampart Division. Dave is misogynistic, racist, brutally violent, egotistical womanizer, yet he defends himself against many of these accusations as he says that his hate is equal opportunity. Though unlawful, he uses intimidation and brutal force to defend his worldview. The most notorious of his actions is his purportedly murdering a suspected serial date rapist, which is why he has been given the nickname "Date Rape Dave". He lives with two of his ex- wives - sisters Barbara (Cynthia Nixon) and Catherine (Anne Heche) - in an effort to keep family together, namely his two daughters, Helen and Margaret, who each have a different sister as their mother. Dave still maintains a sexual relationship with both sisters - whenever the mood suits any of them - while he openly has other sexual relationships with the likes of Sarah (Audra McDonald) and Linda (Robin Wright). His informer is retired officer Hartshorn (Ned Beatty) and street person General Terry (Ben Foster). His boss is Joan Confrey (Sigourney Weaver) who attempts to cover Dave's past deeds but ultimately must face the true rascallion he is. When Dave is caught on video brutally beating a man who accidentally ran into his police car he is faced with decisions that uncover not only his misdeeds but those of his fellow workers.
The cast is filled with fine support (Jon Foster, Ice Cube, Steve Buscemi, et al) who have very little to do, but Harrelson is in every frame obnoxiously smoking cigarettes in a chain smoker fashion. There is not real storyline to follow; we just are forced to watch the wretched life of a disgustingly bad cop with just enough slightly good virtues to keep us with him. As Catherine states, 'You know what I think? I think you were a dirty cop from day one. You were a dirty cop with a dirty mind and you dirtied all of us up by default.' And that includes the audience.
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