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Justice Reviews

Indefatigable assistant District Attorney Gina Gallagher (Tracey Needham) successfully prosecutes Guillermo Rivera (Miguel Perez), who's a middle-management operative in an illicit U.S.-Colombian drug enterprise. Despite being tipped off by a marshal that Gallagher's life is now endangered, ambitious D.A. Jane Newhart (Jobeth Williams) blithely ignores his words of caution. Subsequently, Rivera's Colombian bosses Jairo Jaramillo (Richard Zavaglia) and Orlando Reyes (Tony Plana) order hits on Gina's co-counsel Carlos Guttierez (Ramon Franco) and his wife, too. Meanwhile, FBI agent Frankie (Jim Belushi) has gone under deep cover inside a penitentiary where he saves the life of Sal (Henry Silva), a jailed mobster, allowing him to later infiltrate Sal's drug alliance with the Colombians. Although her pal Detective Moe Green (Charles Durning) is keeping Gina hidden inside a church rectory, Frankie tracks her down and proposes a joint effort against the cartel. Considering that the woefully unoriginal screenplay trots out every imaginable stereotype (including the plucky female D.A., the salty undercover Fed, the slick Mafia Don and the portly paternalistic cop), viewers will easily second-guess this cop-a-thon's every move. A blueprint for hackwork, it hinges on an inter-office conspiracy against Gina, a far-fetched premise that deepens into true ludicrousness when Gina's pudgy protector Moe turns vigilante on her behalf. While some of the chase sequences have their moments, true suspense is impossible due to the stick-figure characters and their arrested development. In the process, otherwise capable veterans like Durning and Silva go down for the histrionic count, although Williams, cast refreshingly against type, etches her villainess role in acid. It's a welcome note of discord in an otherwise bland, homogenized crime opus. Watching it, don't be surprised if you find yourself chanting "Things Don't Go Better with Coke!"