I went into this film not knowing anything about the premise but I am a big fan of the cast. You will remember Gerard Butler from his most famous role in 300, but he has been in countless action films (check out Greenland.) Also, the foil in his named Teddy is played by Frank Grillo.
To be honest, I am surprised he hasn’t become more of a top billed star. He was the best part of the Purge sequels and I was excited to see how both actors played off each other. The director Joe Carnahan seems to have action films as his bread and butter. He is hit or miss, however, The Grey with Liam Neeson was FANTASTIC! Side note Frank Grillo was also in that.
Onto the film.
Immediately I felt the cinematography and score had a B movie 70’s feel. I leaned over and mentioned Quentin Tarantino films. The cheesy, over-the-top violence and almost tongue in cheek acting. Yes, we get that here and IT WORKS. We see various angles of a car driving down the highway and then meet one of our leads Teddy (Grillo) who is in hot water. He’s a con artist and has wronged the worst people and they want him dead. He panics, and the over-acting is here and great! He punches a rookie cop named Valerie (Louder) to get taken into custody. Will he be safe at the precinct?
We then meet Viddick (Butler) who crashes his car into the same car Teddy (Grillo) left on purpose. He wants to be locked up with him. We realize that Viddick is a hitman sent to take Teddy out. This I feel is when the film works. Both leads are in opposite cells and the dialogue as I said is over-the-top and cheesy but it works. They both have great chemistry together and when rookie cop Valerie (Louder) comes in at various times to interject into the conversation it adds a nice spin on things. What you think will be a quiet dialogue filled movie quickly changes. More hitmen are on the way.
I wouldn’t want to give more away from the plot but I will say this film works even when becoming cookie-cutter at times. I had a feeling I would predict the ending. I was right yet also wrong. It didn’t change the point of seeing a movie called COPSHOP.
It was fun. We have fun and laughed and shook our heads in bewilderment. If you are a fan of the cheesy B-movies. Watch this film. The cast all work well together and blend nicely and the score helps make a mediocre film a little better. If the plot had more twists and wasn’t so paper thin I feel we would have had one to really remember. Unfortunately, even with a stellar cast, there isn’t much for them to do. They are stuck in the local jail almost immediately and then we are at a stalemate. Still fun! Still worth seeing with a short runtime you could do much worse. 3 stars out of 5!