Sean Casey (played by Andy Garcia) is a New Yorker who started his working life as a cop. He worked on his law degree at the same time as working as a street cop and has now graduated as a first-year Attorney. He’s the most recent recruit at the NY City District Attorney’s office. Sean’s father, Liam (by Ian Holm) is a long-time NY street cop and his partner is Joey Allegretto (by James Gandolfini). Liam and Joey have been partners for several years. Overnight, a police drugs surveillance job has turned nasty – two cops staking out suspect Jordan Washington (by Shiek Mahmud-Bey) have entered his premises and been shot. The stake-out has then gone crazy, Washington has escaped but he has left three cops shot – two are dead and one, Sean’s father Liam, is badly wounded. The District Attorney is keen for a quick, clean and easy conviction of cop-killer Washington and new boy Sean is chosen to prosecute the case. Sean wants to run a rigorous investigation and ensure justice is done. Washington’s defence lawyer is Sam Vigoda (by Richard Dreyfuss) and Vigoda plants the first seeds of suspicion and doubt in Sean’s mind. As the investigation progresses, Sean starts to uncover clues of suspicious (potentially corrupt) activity with the police ranks … will his loyalties towards his job and his family remain strong and intact as conflicts arise in this investigation?
This is a stock standard police and courtroom drama – the twists in the uncovering story make it watchable, but there is really nothing hugely outstanding about the movie. Andy Garcia is very good in this role, as is Ian Holm and James Gandolfini.
Made in 1996. Directed by Sidney Lumet