Cast: Lee Majors, Abe Vigoda, Don Rickles
TV star Lee Majors hits the minors in Keaton's Cop,
tired and dumb so-called "comedy" that was obviously inspired by Midnight
Run and 48 Hours.
Mike Gable (Majors) is a tough cop who has a penchant
for throwing people
out of windows, illustrated by the opening sequence when he chases two
crooks up to the second floor of a building (using the comic cliché
of us hearing the ruckus from outside, then seeing the crooks being
The next morning, he gets up very late and putting his dog on his
for exercise. Then picking up his son from his ex-wife's house, he
she has a lover from the night before, causing him to run in and throw
him out the window, leading to his arrest. At this point, I started to
slump down in my seat; not seeing one original thing in these first ten
minutes did not give me confidence for the next 85.
Meanwhile, across town in a retirement home, Louie
Keaton (Vigoda) calls
time-out in a poker game with his friend, and leaves the room for
minutes. While he's gone, a hit man enters the room, and shoots the
thinking he's Keaton. Gable and his partner Jake (Rickles) join the
Jake has known ex-mobster Keaton since childhood and they get along,
it's hate at first sight for Gable and Keaton. Of course there's no
should hate each other at first sight, except so the screenwriter can
create chemistry between them.
Actually, at that time I was more pondering Rickles'
I've never been a fan of Rickles' barbed, "insult" humor, though I will
admit that he can be funny at times (as in Toy Story).
since this movie professes to being a comedy, I was expecting him to at
least use his trademark humor, or at least have some amusing
Imagine my surprise when Rickles plays his role completely straight; so
straight, I actually wanted him to be let loose so he could add some
to the unfunny screenplay. I must admit, though, that it was quite
when shortly after, a hit team comes to the retirement village and
get bloodily blasted by a shotgun and painfully dies.
Gabe manages to blow away the hitmen and save Keaton,
but he doesn't
earn Keaton's gratitude or respect. When Keaton is put away in
custody at a hotel, yet another hit team comes in, violently
bloodily killing the cops (I thought this was a comedy), but Keaton is
again saved by Gabe. By now, Gabe is tired of Keaton's refusal to
and demands Keaton do so. Keaton says he'll agree to do so if he's let
free to run the investigation with Gabe. Gabe and Keaton go to the
for permission, and to remind viewers what this movie rips off, says,
got 48 Hours!" The duo set off to find comedy, action,
mystery, but fail at all three, choosing to mostly drive around and
"jokes" at each other.
Maybe the filmmakers felt they had to follow a formula.
they at least juiced it up with some fresh material? And did it have to
be so schizophrenic? It can't decide whether to be a wisecracking
or a violent action movie. Mixing action and comedy can be
- look at Midnight Run and 48 Hours.
when you mix hard action and comedy - and in equal parts -
doomed to fail. When viewers watch a movie, they usually expect and are
set for one genre. Occasional detours into another genre along the way
can work, because the focus is still on the main genre. When two genres
are mixed, the viewer is forced to detour his set expectations
the movie. 48 Hours mixed hard action and comedy, but
because up front its heart was comedy - viewers knew that the detours
action were just temporary, while knowing the movie's true heart. I
Cop could be called a "half hearted" effort, with each half
How about the action and comedy itself? Well, the action
or original except for the fact a shotgun has a laser sight on it. And
the movie has a strange sense of humor that might offend certain
For example, the hitmen who kill Gabe's partner are gay. The screenplay
does not make jokes about the actions these gay characters do, but
us to laugh simply because they are gay. What's worse is the fact the
keeps forgetting to be funny (or action packed). Imagine people
around talking, with little to no musical score - that's what the bulk
of the picture is like.
Of all the people involved in the movie, I felt most
sorry for Majors.
In defense of him, I must point out that it's quite clear in the movie
that Majors is not happy to be in this movie. You got to admire him for
sticking it out, though he acts like he's gritting his teeth. I felt
that myself for most of the movie
UPDATE: "Tim" sent some additional information
"Haven't seen the movie, which is probably just as
well. But I do remember that several companies offered shotgun laser
sights for a while. They were intended for use with shotguns that fired
rifled slugs. Using one on a shotgun that was firing standard shot, of
course, would make as much sense as putting a silencer on a revolver.
Probably looks at least a little bit cool/threatening, though."
Check for availability on Amazon (VHS)
for availability on Amazon (DVD)
See also: Deadly Force, Real Men, Drive