Set against the urban unrest that exploded in Los Angeles after the 1992 beating of Rodney King, this gripping police thriller showcases an inspired performance by Kurt Russell as a racist cop with a disturbingly distorted sense of justice. As the city simmers in hostility awaiting a verdict in the King-beating trial, Eldon Perry (Russell) and his rookie partner Bobby (Scott Speedman) investigate a high-profile quadruple homicide. When their deeply corrupt boss (Brendan Gleeson) instructs them to pin the murders on a pair of innocent ex-cons, Eldon’s moral deficiencies – as well as those of the force – become increasingly apparent to Bobby, forcing him to reconsider his loyalty. Eschewing flashy pyrotechnics, the film generates nerve-racking tension by skillfully juxtaposing the racially charged story with the pervasive threat of a violent inner-city uprising.
Kinsey Scale: 1 (Ving Rhames, seen here as a politically ambitious deputy chief, explored his feminine side as a drag queen with a heart of gold in Holiday Heart. Lolita Davidovich, appearing briefly as Eldon’s estranged wife, was in Gods and Monsters, about gay director James Whale.(Appeared in Gay City News)