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Cop Land (1997)


Copland Poster

Cop Land (1997)

Cop Land is the first movie that I remember hearing about where an actor or actress severely changed their weight for a part in a film.  Sylvester Stallone gained 40 lbs. for his role in the movie.  I remember thinking how crazy he was for doing that.  40 lbs. is a lot of weight to gain, and it is a lot more to have to lose again.  Now, 16 years later, I realize that it was just Stallone’s awesome dedication to doing what he loves that allowed him to do what was necessary for his role in Cop Land.

Copland Stallone De Niro

The film is about an army of corrupt New York City cops with ties to the mob who buy themselves a chunk of New Jersey.  They are virtually untouchable until the sheriff of their little “Cop Land” (Sylvester Stallone) becomes wise to their ways.

The movie was written and directed by James Mangold and the rest of the noteworthy cast includes Harvey Keitel, Robert De Niro, Ray Liotta, Robert Patrick, Peter Berg, Michael Rapaport, Annabella Sciorra, Janeane Garofalo, Noah Emmerich, Cathy Moriarty, Frank Vincent, John Spencer, Arthur J. Nascarella, Edie Falco, John Ventimiglia, Robert John Burke, Michael Gaston, Bruce Altman, Tony Sirico, Frank Pellegrino, Vincent Laresca, Victor Williams, Paul Calderon, and Malik Yoba.

They brought in all of the big guns to make this film.  The cast list is so staggering that I am sure that I left someone out.  You couldn’t ask for a better cast in a movie.

Copland Keitel Patrick

Because of the type of movie Cop Land is, and especially because of the cast, you can expect a lot of violence and language, but mostly, powerful performances.

Cop dramas don’t get a whole lot better than this one.  Cop Land is one of those movies that gets better every time that I watch it.

It is interesting because a number of actors in the film were cast against type.  Guys who usually play bad guys are now playing cops.  But, it works out because some of them are corrupt.  So, I guess they are just bad guys with a badge.

Copland Liotta

It is no surprise that the movie has a bit of a Goodfellas (1990) and The Sopranos feel to it, because a number of the cast members were in those shows.  A couple of them were also in the film Beautiful Girls (1996).

With so many great actors in the movie, none of them really stood out over another because they were all acting on the same level.

Overall, Cop Land is a unique, underrated cop drama that packs a big bang.  Like a fine wine, it gets better with age.

I rate this movie an 8 on a scale of 1-10.

Buy, rent, or run?  Buy.

The Heat (2013)


The Heat Poster 2

The Heat (2013)

The Heat is about a hard-working, by-the-book, know-it-all FBI special agent (Sandra Bullock) who is reluctantly partnered with a foul-mouthed, bad-tempered, Boston police officer (Melissa McCarthy) with a knack for breaking the rules.  The completely mismatched pair work together to try to stop drug-runners in the Boston area.

The Heat McCarthy Wilson Bullock

The movie was written by Katie Dippold and directed by Paul Feig.

The rest of the notable cast includes Demian Bichir, Marlon Wayans, Michael Rapaport, Thomas F. Wilson, Michael McDonald, Jane Curtin, and Taran Killam.

The Heat McCarthy Bullock

This movie showed shades of Miss Congeniality (2000) where Bullock played a very similar type of FBI agent.  The main difference is that The Heat is way raunchier, obscene humor, mainly due to McCarthy’s character.

The pairing of Bullock and McCarthy is what really made this film work.  Their personalities were so different from each other that they absolutely clashed.  This resulted in roaring laughter.  But, what really made the film was when McCarthy’s winning personality began to rub off on Bullock.  Bullock has forever been known to take on the classier, more wholesome roles.  Her comedies usually go as far as PG-13 rated humor.  Seeing her in an R-rated comedy just made her part even more hysterical.

The Heat Duo

I will admit that I have only seen Melissa McCarthy in a few movies.  She was pretty funny in the parts that I have seen her play.  She reminds me of a female more vulgar version of Chris Farley.  She is a bigger person like Farley and she always brings a ton of energy to her characters like he did.  For a bigger guy, it was always surprising to me how Chris Farley was always all over the place bouncing around with tons of vigor.  McCarthy is the same way.  Throw comedy into the mix and it’s inevitable that you are bound to laugh uncontrollably.  Her character in The Heat was no exception.

The Heat Similar Partners

This is the best Melissa McCarthy movie that I have seen and perhaps Sandra Bullock’s funniest movie yet.  I had expected basically another Miss Congeniality, but I was pleasantly surprised at how much funnier this movie was than that one.

The Heat Dancing

In this world of endless number of sequels and remakes, it is no surprise to me that a sequel to this film is already in the works.  Hollywood knows a goldmine when it sees one.  They are cashing in while the getting is good.  This is one of those instances where I don’t mind.  Bring on a sequel.  This movie was good for tons of laughs.  The next one is bound to be almost as good.

I rate this movie an 8 on a scale of 1-10.

Buy, rent, or run?  Buy.

Trailer for The Heat (2013)


The Heat Poster

The Heat (2013) (click on the title for my full review)

Another comedy for Sandra Bullock.  This movie looks suspiciously similar to Miss Congeniality (2000).  In fact, it could just be part 3 without the oficial title.  Everything about The Heat looks similar to Miss Congeniality.  We have seen this movie before, twice.  I’m sure it will still have its moments of humor, but I think I’ll wait for the DVD.

Besides Bullock, other notable cast includes Melissa McCarthy, Marlon Wayans, Michael Rapaport, Thomas F. Wilson, Bill Burr, Luis Da Silva Jr., Jamie Denbo, and Michael McDonald.

The movie is directed by Paul Feig and is set to release on 6/28/13.