Officer Down Blu-ray Review
Years ago, dirty Connecticut detective David Callahan (Stephen Dorff) was known to hit the bottle hard and frequent strip clubs. That all came to a halt when Callahan got involved in a botched drug deal that left him bruised and scarred, forever changed.
He put it all behind, saw his second chance as the opportunity to try to become a better father and husband to his daughter (Beatrice Miller) and wife (Elisabeth Röhm, NBC’s HEROES). He meets with a priest, Father Reddy (Tommy Flanagan, “Chibs” Telford on FX’s SONS OF ANARCHY), on occasion, hoping to make sense of it all. Then, one day, the man who saved his life (Misha Kuznetsov, ABC’s now-cancelled 666 PARK AVENUE) turns up. This meeting eventually leads to a suspicious man known as “The Angel” (Walton Goggins, Boyd Crowder on FX’s JUSTIFIED), who Callahan believes to be a predator and who may have a link to the detective. With this, Callahan is back in the world he’s tried to leave and forced to confront his past and secrets.
This movie has been done so many times, you can almost figure exactly how the chain of events will unfold from scene to scene. Directed by Brian A. Miller (the 2011 Dave Bautista vehicle HOUSE OF THE RISING SON), OFFICER DOWN apparently wants nothing more than to stay within the framework laid out by every other entry in the dirty-cop-seeking-redemption sub-genre.
OFFICER DOWN is riddled with cliché after cliché. There are flashbacks to fill in the holes and tell how Callahan’s work habits and flaws led to a distrusting family. There are amateurish musings on the existence of fate and meaning of second chances. There are alleyway chases. There are all-day stakeouts and all-night record-checking sessions. (The main character does so many things throughout the story to screw up his home life that you understand why his family thinks he’s married to his career. It would be hard to blame them for booting Callahan out the door or not being there when the case is solved.)
Even outside of the story, there are no clear attempts to offer anything original. Take, for example, the tagline (“No One is Above the Law”), which could belong to any other dirty cop movie. Or the main character’s name, which is an obvious rip on (the filmmakers might say homage to) Clint Eastwood’s Dirty Harry Callahan.
Stephen Dorff is a good actor when given strong material (he was tremendous as actor Johnny Marco in Sofia Coppola’s SOMEWHERE). This, clearly, is a safe and predictable script (written by John Chase). You can see it in his face he’s trying, but Dorff still has major difficulty in delivering anything but a standard performance. Other familiar faces that show up include James Woods, Dominic Purcell (Lincoln Burrows on Fox’s PRISON BREAK), David Boreanaz (BUFFY THE VAMPIRE SLAYER and ANGEL), AnnaLynne McCord (The CW’s 90210), and rapper Soulja Boy.
Video: 2.40:1 in 1080p with MPEG-4 AVC codec. The video presentation offers fine detail and balance throughout, though the production values sometimes hinder the overall quality of the Blu-ray.
Audio: English Dolby TrueHD 5.1. The audio is adequate, with clear dialogue and effects but certainly nothing standout.
There are no special features on this release of OFFICER DOWN.