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(Review originally written at 25 May 2008)

What makes "Narc" better than the average current day genre attempt is that It tries to recapture the things that made cop-movies from the '70's so great to watch. It's gritty and realistic with all of its things. The story, the characters, basically everything. It doesn't try to hide anything or make things seem better than they are. It also picks a more personal approach by showing how the undercover life affects the personal lives of those involved with it. The movie is kind of done in the same style as "Training Day" of one year earlier, so if you liked that movie, this is also a movie for you to watch.

Even though the story and way it progresses seemed rather predictable to me, it still works out powerful due to the approach of the movie. Joe Carnahan made a great movie. Sort of too bad that he is still waiting for his big breakthrough by the general crowd but with movies such as "Killing Pablo", with Christian Bale and Javier Bardem in the main leads, this only seems like a matter of time. Also the fact that this movie was very low budget and filmed within a month shows that Joe Carnahan truly has talent and makes his accomplishment with this movie seem all the more amazing.

Also the acting makes this movie a real great one. Jason Patric is a great actor but he has made some bad movie choices in his career, which still causes him to be less known and appreciate as for instance Mark Wahlberg or Ethan Hawke, who play in the same type of movies and play the same kind of roles. Of course the movie also really benefits from the presence of Ray Liotta. Which other actor is better to play a tough 'bad' cop?

Its atmosphere and style of film-making mostly causes this movie to work out as powerful and effective as it does. "Narc" is perhaps not the most original or best written genre movie around but it nevertheless remains a perfectly great viewing because of its style and approach, combined with some fine acting performances.

8/10

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About Frank Veenstra

Watches movies...writes about them...and that's it for now.
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