Saturday, March 9, 2013

The Laughing Policeman (1973)

-Hey man, what the fuck y'all chasing me for?
   -What the fuck you running for?
                            -Cuz y'all chasing me!

I don't actually know what is involved in the process of investigating a crime.  Usually, what we get from most hollywood films ends up being a little too exciting and action packed to be believed.  Sure it's entertaining and makes for great movie watching, but the pros probably roll their eyes when they watch Se7en, Heat or The Departed.  It's kinda like when real boxers watch Rocky.

Having said that, what we get with The Laughing Policeman is probably the most authentic and accurate depiction of police procedurals, short of a documentary, that you will find.  Well, at least what I believe to be an accurate depiction.

Walter Matthau stars in the third of his trilogy of 70's crime films which included Charley Varrick and The Taking of Pelham 123.  Unless you are a huge police procedural head, this will probably be the least entertaining of the bunch for you.  It's got it's draggy wait-and-see parts.  It's got it's dead ends and red herrings.  The slaughter at the beginning is probably the most exciting actiony part.

But wait, there's more.  We get Bruce Dern at his slimy assholey best (this was probably a  preperatory role for his work in The Driver).  The Iron Eagle, himself, Louis Gossett Jr is in attendance.  We get some good old fashioned 70's racism.  The obligatory 70's car chase, which is good to watch for the sake of reference but not so hot on the excitement scale.  Anthony Zerbe!, AND,...a yound tender scantily clad Cathy Lee Crosby for a little ocular pleasure.  That's Incredible!

Slaughter on a bus.  One of the victims is Matthau's partner, who was on vacation at the time. What was he doing on a bus?  Was he following someone?  Was someone following him? How are the passengers connected.  Will Matthau break character and crack a joke?  All this and more will be answered when you watch the ironically titled, The Laughing Policeman

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