Rated: R For language and violence. Reviewed by: Frank and Chris Release date: December 25, 1992 Released by: Universal Studios, Inc.
Consider this: Two firemen with one fun and a few bullets, shooting it out against a drug-dealing gang with AK-47s in their arsenal.
The premise that sets up this scene is that the firemen (William Sadler and Bill Paxton) are searching for stolen gold in an abandoned building in East St. Louis, the same building in which the gang conducts their business.
Headed by rappers Ice-T and Ice Cube, the gang runs their drug dealing like a business, making appointments by cellular phone and referring to one another as associates.
The building is also inhabited by a cantankerous old homeless guy (Art Evans) and a dead body. For an abandoned building, there sure is a lot of activity going on in it.
The gang members are stereotypical, but the screenplay by Bob Gale and Robert Zemeckis adds a new twist by using firemen instead of cops.
Directed by Walter Hill (48 Hours), the shooting is broken up by humor provided by the feisty Evans and, thankfully, the violence isn't as graphic as in most drug-related films. Still, there's enough action to please even the pickiest adventure fans.