THE ONLY THING MORE DANGEROUS THAN THE LINE BEING CROSSED, IS THE COP WHO WILL CROSS IT.
Young cop Jake Hoyt (Ethan Hawke) hopes to rise from the ranks by working with a seasoned narcotics detective (Denzel Washington) but discovers that he is one reason why the streets are so mean… There is a certain pleasure in watching Washington turn into a character that is seriously lacking any sympathetic traits. This boy in blue has seen so much dirt on the streets that he no longer cares about the law. Washington has a firm grip and Hawke is good as the clear conscience in a deadly world of gang violence and police corruption. Entertaining and quite pacy at times – the filmmakers do their best not to make you think hard about the lack of originality here.
2001-U.S. 120 min. Color. Widescreen. Produced by Jeffrey Silvers, Bobby Newmyer. Directed by Antoine Fuqua. Screenplay: David Ayer. Cast: Denzel Washington (Alonzo Harris), Ethan Hawke (Jake Hoyt), Scott Glenn (Roger), Tom Berenger, Harris Yulin, Raymond J. Barry… Dr. Dre, Snoop Dogg, Macy Gray, Eva Mendes.
Trivia: Tobey Maguire and Matt Damon were allegedly considered for the part of Hoyt; Samuel L. Jackson and Bruce Willis for the part of Harris. Followed by a TV series, Training Day (2017- ).
Oscar: Best Actor (Washington).
Quote: “To protect the sheep you gotta catch the wolf, and it takes a wolf to catch a wolf.” (Washington)
Last word: “You just make the movie. I never thought… Ethan [Hawke] reminded me of this – I was just in the zone. Ethan reminded me, we were shooting a scene in the car, and I said, ‘You get this right, Ethan, and you’re gonna get nominated for an Oscar.’ He came up to me at the Academy Awards and said, ‘D’you remember you told me about this?’ And I said, ‘I don’t remember anything about it at all.’ He said, ‘I remember, and I thought you were fuckin’ losing your mind. I thought you were going insane.’ [Laughs] He told me that, and I said, ‘I don’t know.’ But I must have felt something, just in that one moment. There was something there.” (Fuqua, Den of Geek)