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Review: 'Officer Down' trapped in a jumbled story

Stephen Dorff plays a former bad cop trying to make things right.

January 17, 2013|By Mark Olsen
  • David Boreanaz in "Officer Down."
David Boreanaz in "Officer Down." (Drew Amato / Anchor Bay Films )

Directed by Brian A. Miller and written by John Chase, "Officer Down" is about a once-bad cop (Stephen Dorff) trying to mend his ways at home and at work. But it's really just an overstuffed story that comes off not as layered but rather as an unfocused jumble.

Dorff plays Callahan, whose hazy memories of being shot seem to hold the key to an ongoing case involving the murder of young strippers. Soon, he's drawn back into the sleazy underworld he longs to escape.

The film constantly flips between Callahan's past and present (shifting from color to black and white in a way that becomes almost insulting in its assumption that audiences might otherwise not be able to follow along) as he attempts to piece together what happened to him to solve this ongoing mystery.

Familiar faces such as Walton Goggins, James Woods, Stephen Lang, David Boreanaz and AnnaLynne McCord round out the cast.

It really is too bad that after his subtle turn in Sofia Coppola's "Somewhere," as an actor not unlike Stephen Dorff stuck making films not unlike this one, the actual Dorff appears unable to escape from the bondage of bad movies. (Perhaps he doesn't want to?)


"Officer Down." MPAA rating: R for violence, language, nudity and drug content. Running time: 1 hour, 37 minutes. At Laemmle's Noho7, North Hollywood.

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