Friday, January 14, 2011

Script review – “48 Hours” (1982) by Walter Hill and Larry Gross

This hasn’t aged very well, mostly because it’s been copied so often. Several scenes feel very tired, eg Cates (tough cop) getting told off by his boss for breaking rules, the squabbling partners. Some claim this as the first buddy cop film – but what was Starsky and Hutch and Chips, etc? It borrows from The Driver the idea of having three lead characters described in short sentences at the beginning but isn’t written in a style as sparse as that earlier film. The character of Elaine, Cates’ girlfriend, is thrown away – there are some “character scenes” between them (quite wordy – Gross’ influence?); she could easily have been cut out of the film altogether (she does suggest where they might find the baddies at the end, but anyone could have done that). It’s striking how racist Cates’ character is – he really gets stuck into Reggie with several racist remarks.

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