Friday, October 24, 2008

No Glory in standard cop tale

Posted By on Fri, Oct 24, 2008 at 3:30 PM

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PRIDE AND GLORY

DIRECTED BY Gavin O’Connor

STARS Edward Norton, Colin Farrell

The award for the year's most generic title thus far handily goes to Pride and Glory, a moniker so instantly forgettable that, in just a few short weeks, folks will be remembering the film as Honor and Justice or Law and Order or Cops and Crooks or, with apologies to Dostoevsky, Crime and Punishment.

Then again, this snoozy title reflects the picture bearing it, since this is nothing but one more look at police corruption, a subgenre that's become especially threadbare during the course of this decade (Narc, Dark Blue, We Own the Night). What's especially lamentable is that this movie strands yet another exemplary turn by Edward Norton, who once again is superior to the material surrounding him.

Here, he plays Ray Tierney, part of a clan of cops: His father (Jon Voight), his brother Francis (Noah Emmerich) and his brother-in-law Jimmy (Colin Farrell) also have NYPD blood coursing through their veins. Troubled by a past tragedy and therefore satisfied to be working a quiet desk job, Ray is reluctantly pulled back onto the streets after four police officers are fatally gunned down in the line of duty. As Ray works his connections in the back alleys and juggles a handful of clues, he makes the startling discovery that the murders are connected to dealings within his own family.

For the first hour, Pride and Glory wears its formulaic trappings fairly well, but a movie that refuses to offer anything fresh — watching Farrell go hyper for the umpteenth time certainly doesn't qualify — has no reason to clock in at a strenuous 125 minutes.

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