Excerpt: Three Brooklyn police officers at different points in their career come to terms with the rigors of the job: Eddie (Richard Gere) is the 22-year veteran, a beat cop with just seven more days on the force and trying to get through them without making waves; Tango (Don Cheadle) has been working undercover in the projects getting deep into a drug dealing ring, but he's ready to get out, while Sal (Ethan Hawke) is a family man whose desperation to support his pregnant wife...
Excerpt: A trip to grimmest copland with a fine pedigree and long tradition on both the big and small screen standing behind it, in a way Brooklyn's Finest falls prey to the paradox it sets up in its first and most riveting scene. A known criminal named Carlo (Vincent D'Onofrio) is explaining to his NYPD connection Sal (Ethan Hawke) the lesson in the difference between ethics and morals that a judge recently gave him.
Excerpt: I don’t often refer to films using other films as examples of style, feel or content, but if you asked me to describe Antoine Fuqua’s Brooklyn’s Finest to you that way, I would probably call it a combination of Boyz N the Hood and The Departed . It might also be thought of as an aesthetic sequel to Fuqua’s own Training Day . But no matter how it’s described, you can’t deny that Fuqua is on top of his game here in a genre that he helped perfect.
Excerpt: In this film, three conflicted New York City police officers are forever transformed by their involvement in a massive drug operation. Burned out veteran Eddie Dugan is just one week away from his retirement. Narcotics officer Sal Procida has discovered there's no line he won't cross to provide a better life for his long-suffering wife and seven children.
Excerpt: Don Cheadle plays an undercover cop in Brooklyn’s Finest , but is seeking a way out. He is becoming one of the drug dealers, having thoughts of turning on his fellow officers, and is sick of not being able to have a family. Tango (Cheadle) meets with his superior in a restaurant, and director Antoine Fuqua sits on Tango’s face.
Conclusion: 'Brooklyn's Finest' is an authentic, honest journey into the pressures involved with being a cop in very tough neighborhoods. As in real life, there is no one definition for the "cop" experience, and here the acting, directing, and writing combine to explore these emotional tragedies in Shakespearean broad strokes. Though not perfect, I suspect this film -- as well as its "always on 10" mentality -- may grow on me as time passes.
Excerpt: “It's not about right or wrong. It's about righter and wronger.” Brooklyn’s Finest is neatly summed up by its opening line. Three interweaving tales of gang violence, police corruption and social drama illustrate the large areas of grey that exist between the “good” and “bad” guys. Issues of honour, reward, loyalty, love, disillusionment, disappointment and betrayal are all touched upon.
Excerpt: At the very least, you've got to admire screenwriter Michael Martin's passion. He was a lowly MTA employee in New York City when he wrote Brooklyn's Finest , with the obvious intention of emulating the great New York cop dramas of generations past. The themes of betrayal, of disillusionment, of living life undercover and of putting your life on the line for strangers are very, very well-worn in other films of the genre, but Martin clearly worked hard to put his own spin...
Excerpt: The perfectly adequate cop drama Brooklyn’s Finest would feel awfully derivative even without a cast mostly consisting of the Morally Ambiguous Police-Movie All-Stars. Seemingly half the gritty undercover thrillers of the past 25 years are represented. For those keeping track at home, Finest stars Internal Affairs’ Richard Gere, New Jack City ’s Wesley Snipes (playing, of all things, a charismatic, larger-than-life drug dealer), Sea Of Love ’s Ellen Barkin, and Traitor...
Summary: Righter and wronger. If someone were to make a short list of the most under-appreciated filmmakers working in Hollywood today, Antoine Fuqua's name would have to be among the first listed. His films work in a compelling middle ground between tight and electric action and captivatingly deep thematic elements that together reveal his uncanny ability to craft pictures that find just the right balance between slick action and meaningful drama.