These days, James Mangold is a veteran of both big-budget blockbusters and acclaimed prestige dramas, having directed Badger, Logan, indiana jones 5, knight and day, walk the lineY 3:10 to Yuma to name just six, but his third directorial effort and his breakthrough police land it still stands as one of his best.
Released with little initial fanfare in the summer of 1997, the hard-boiled modern noir features an all-star cast delivering terrific performances in a slow-burn crime story featuring corrupt cops, faked deaths, an internal affairs investigation, and the local sheriff, all which are involved in a dangerous web of lies and conspiracies.
police land it was a decent-sized hit at the time after earning $63 million on a $15 million budget, and while the reviews were solid across the board, it didn’t cause a bit of a stir during awards season. Fortunately, though, it’s clear that the film’s reputation only continues to grow stronger as the years go on.
Sylvester Stallone does some of the best work of his career as Freddy Heflin, while Michael Rapaport, Harvey Keitel, Robert De Niro, Ray Liotta, Robert Patrick and many other established names ably support him. The kind of understated, adult-biased thriller that Hollywood doesn’t seem all that interested in doing anymore, police land it still stands as one of the unsung gems of a genre that has become increasingly saturated over the years.
25 years is a long time, but it’s nice to know that moviegoers around the world can still appreciate an excellently overlooked slice of cinema.