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MOVIE REVIEW: DRAGGED ACROSS CONCRETE (Screening as part of Revelation Film Festival)

| 6 July 2019 | Reply

MOVIE REVIEW: DRAGGED ACROSS CONCRETE (Screening as part of Revelation Film Festival)
Written & directed by S Craig Zahler
Starring Mel Gibson, Vince Vaughn, Tory Kittles, Michael Jai White, Laurie Holden, Don Johnson
Reviewed by Shane Pinnegar

When you’ve been scuffing concrete for too many years – too many decades – as a New York street cop, you’re in danger of losing your compassion, says Don Johnson’s Chief Lieutenant Calvert to his former partner, Mel Gibson’s Brett Ridgeman.

Ridgeman is in trouble for brutally beating a suspect, and even he realises that the job, the low pay, and the lack of opportunity have left him a husk of a man. Laurie Holden supports superbly as Ridgeman’s ailing but supportive wife, who is dealing with the effects of MS (the look on her face in the final scene will blow you away).

Suspended without pay and already struggling to make ends meet, Ridgeman and hot headed partner Anthony Lurasetti (Vince Vaughn) turn to the criminal underworld to finance their way out of the dead end job which is eating them alive. After all, who cares if some dirtbags get hurt, they deserve what they get.

And here is the pivotal theme behind the film: there’s two types of dirty cops. There’s the corrupt dirty – those who take bribes or steal from the bad (or good) guys. Then there’s the other kind of dirty. The Dirty Harry kind, who are so disgusted by the bad guys that they don’t follow the rules bringing them down.

Dragged Over Concrete tells the story of a guy who has seen enough – too much – and finally realises the only way he can protect those he loves is to make the leap from one kind of dirty cop to the other, and rip off a gang of bank robbers.

This is a slow-moving film for the most part, writer/director S. Craig Zahler drawing us into this sordid, unhappy world via clever writing and superb acting by a bunch of pros. In fact you could surmise that Zahler is attempting to recreate a similar feel to the classic Pacino/DeNiro film Heat -very talky, slow moving at times, and entirely reliant on the skilled acting and direction. When shit does kick off, though, it does so with grit and style, and once again the actors and director make this a total believable scenario.

Dragged Over Concrete is a powerful movie, with superb performances by all involved, especially the powerful leads and Tory Kittles, who proves himself one to watch out for as an ex-con who gets involved in the robbery.

Category: Movie & Theatre Reviews

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