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Judy Thorburn's Movie Reviews

Hollywood Homicide

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Judy Thorburn

Hollywood Homicide

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Flick Chicks Chick-O-Meter The Flick Chicks, film, video, movie reviews, critics, Judy Thorburn, Victoria Alexander, Polly Peluso, Shannon Onstot, Jacqueline Monahan, Tasha ChemplavilFlick Chicks Chick-O-Meter The Flick Chicks, film, video, movie reviews, critics, Judy Thorburn, Victoria Alexander, Polly Peluso, Shannon Onstot, Jacqueline Monahan, Tasha ChemplavilFlick Chicks Chick-O-Meter The Flick Chicks, film, video, movie reviews, critics, Judy Thorburn, Victoria Alexander, Polly Peluso, Shannon Onstot, Jacqueline Monahan, Tasha ChemplavilFlick Chicks Chick-O-Meter The Flick Chicks, film, video, movie reviews, critics, Judy Thorburn, Victoria Alexander, Polly Peluso, Shannon Onstot, Jacqueline Monahan, Tasha ChemplavilFlick Chicks Chick-O-Meter The Flick Chicks, film, video, movie reviews, critics, Judy Thorburn, Victoria Alexander, Polly Peluso, Shannon Onstot, Jacqueline Monahan, Tasha Chemplavil

“HOLLYWOOD HOMICIDE” – IS A KILLER COMEDY

Just when you think you’ve had your share of mismatched cop/buddy action movies along comes another to add to the genre.. At first, Lethal Weapon may come to mind. But, this pairing of Harrison Ford and Josh Hartnett  is nothing like Mel Gibson and Danny Glover. Forget about race, ethnicity of a duo, or one partner who might be a little out of his mind.  These cops have other things they are concerned with other than having to solve a murder case. It’s those sideline interests that give these characters a twist and add a new hook to a familiar formula.  The result is wacky and pretty hilarious.

Harrison Ford goes against type and plays thrice divorced veteran homicide cop Joe Gavilan whose attention is diverted by his moonlight job as real estate broker while solving cases for the LAPD. His partner for the last four months is young, babe magnet K.C. Calden (baby faced Josh Hartnett) who himself feels it’s more important to “follow his bliss” and spends his off hours as a yoga instructor, but really wants to make it as an actor. They are called in to investigate the gang style murder of a rap group at a hip hop nightclub in L.A., and soon find out that the head of the rappers’ record label, suave mogul Antoine Sartain (Isaiah Washington) might be the man who ordered the artists’ demise. Word has it Sartain doesn’t take it well when learning one of his groups want to break out of their contract and go out on their own. Meanwhile, as Joe and KC dig deeper into their investigation, Joe finds himself the target of Internal Affairs officer, Bernie Macko (Bruce Greenwood, impressive as JFK in 13 Days) who has it out for him, and KC is busy trying to rehearse for his lead role in Streetcar Named Desire.

The humor arises from the situations that occur when the outside aspirations get in the way while these cops are on duty. Whether trying to negotiate a real estate deal on his cell phone while in the middle of a car or foot chase or grabbing a bicycle and maneuvering thru traffic, Ford has the knack for handling the comedy shtick.. He hasn’t shown this kind of appeal since his Indiana Jones days and provides an engaging comic touch to his worn out older cop.  His much younger buddy, the spiritually minded KC, is portrayed effectively by the cute and boyish, Harnett. They are opposites, for sure, but share credible screen chemistry.

A plethora of Hollywood stars and industry entertainers show up in supporting roles or brief cameos. They include Martin Landau as a rich, retired film producer whose mansion Joe is trying to sell, Lolita Davidovich as a Heidi Fleiss type Hollywood madam, Dwight Yoakum plays a former cop and Sartain’s hit man, and the always alluring, underrated, scene stealer Lena Olin is Ruby, the radio show psychic who is Joe’s love interest and also happens to be the former lover of Joe’s nemesis, Macko. Gladys Knight, Smokey Robinson, Eric Idle, Robert Wagner, Frank Sinatra Jr. make brief appearances.  But, it is Lou Diamond Phillips, who plays an undercover cop in full drag, “Wanda”, a street prostitute, that takes the cake.  He looks surprisingly fetching in a black wig, mini dress and heels – very funny, indeed!

Hollywood Homicide won’t make my top ten list by any means.  But, there is enough action mixed with plenty of humor for me to give my recommendation. It’s also a look into the Hollywood scene with its pretentious industry movers and shakers and their extravagant lifestyles.  Plus, it offers glimpses of “hot” local color like Rodeo Drive, Grauman’s Chinese Theatre and the beautiful Venice Beach canals.

The lengthy fight scene at the end could have been shortened, since it goes on what seems like forever.  And, there are the obligatory chases and car crashes through crowded streets that every cop action movie must include, or so it seems. But, what the heck. I liked the offbeat characterizations of the leads who brought a different angle to this genre. And it was cool, seeing the numerous stars that show up unexpectedly.  So, if you want to get out of the summer heat and enjoy some harmless comic relief,  Hollywood Homicide isn’t a bad way to kill a few hours.