Backstreet Justice (1994, directed by Chris McIntyre)


“These straight-to-video, schlocky films I was getting were giving me an ulcer, basically because I was the only one on the set that cared about anything… Between that and my biological clock, I decided to give it all away.”

— Linda Kozlowksi, on why she retired from acting

When Linda Kozlowski talked about the “shlocky films” that soured her on acting, Backstreet Justice was probably high on the list.  Kozlowski may have found fame co-starring with her then-husband Paul Hogan in the Crocodile Dundee films but, in Backstreet Justice, there’s neither an Australian nor a sense of humor to be found.

Kozlowski plays Keri Finnegan, a tough and streetwise private investigator in Philadelphia.  Her late father was a policeman who was accused of corruption while her mentor (Hector Elizondo) is the district attorney.  Most of the cops hate Keri, especially Captain Giarusso (Paul Sorvino).  The one exception is her lover, Nick Donovan (John Shea).

The residents of Philadelphia’s worst neighborhood have hired Keri to protect them.  For the past two years, a murderer has lurked among them.  With the police showing no interest in solving the crimes, the neighborhood turns to Keri.  Keri’s investigation leads her to believe that the murders are being carried out be corrupt cops but Keri isn’t prepared for just how far up the corruption goes.

For a straight-to-video film, Backstreet Justice has a surprisingly good cast, with Paul Sorvino, Hector Elizondo, John Shea, Tammy Grimes, and Viveca Lindfors all appearing in supporting roles.  Linda Kozlowski holds her own opposite her better-known co-stars and is believable in the film’s many action scenes.  The movie has a good sense of urban squalor and captures the desperation of people living in a dying neighborhood.  The main problem with the film is that the central mystery is never that interesting and the solution is one that most people will see coming from miles away.  For all the violence and scenes of people chasing each other, Backstreet Justice is still a boring movie.

With the exception of one surprisingly explicit sex scene, Backstreet Justice could easily pass for a made-for-TV film or a pilot for a Keri Finnegan television series.  Instead, it was just another straight-to-video thriller and another reason for the talented Linda Kozlowski to leave acting behind.  Her final film appearance was in 2001’s Crocodile Dundee in Los Angeles.

Weekly Reading Round-Up : 01/19/2020 – 01/25/2020


Ryan C.'s Four Color Apocalypse

Just when you thought you’d probably seen the last of this column — anyway, it’s not that I’ve been missing my usual Wednesday comic shop pick-ups, it’s more a case of nothing standing out all that much. Which, in fairness, is also the case with a couple of the books this week, but I wanted to get “back in the saddle” with doing these Round-Ups every seven days, so now’s as good a time as ever, right? We’ve got one first issue and three last issues to look at this week, although it turns out that two of those last issues are actually anything but, which we’ll deal with in due course —

Guardians Of The Galaxy #1 marks yet another re-launch of Marvel’s premier cosmic super-team, this time courtesy of mega-popular Immortal Hulk scribe Al Ewing and artist Juann Cabal. This one referred back to events of the…

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New Movie Posters for you to see (With trailers included!)


I know, I know, I have been away from posting my normal movie previews and reviews for a while, that is my fault!

But I’ll be back to posting my normal movie previews/reviews soon!

Until then here are some things you can look forward to me previewing and reviewing:

A Perfect Host

2020 movie posters

Alien OutBreak

Alien outbreak

Covenant

Covenant

 

And last, but not least, You might have been…

Stalked

Hope you all enjoyed my tour through my movie screeners I get to watch this month!

Music Video of the Day: Casino Queen by Jackie Lynn (2020, dir by Haley Fohr and Krzys Piotrowski)


One minute, you’re running through the desert.

The next minute, you’re winning everyone’s money.

Such is life, when you’re a Casino Queen.

Actually, I don’t know if that interpretation is correct or not.  This seems to be a video that’s open to multiple interpretations.  I guess a lot of how you react to it will depend on how you feel about casinos in general.  I find casinos to be depressing places, where people inevitably gamble away their futures while the local Elvis impersonator begs someone to drop a quarter in his guitar case.  Other people tend to see casinos as being a place where anyone can strike it big, if they just have the right combination of luck and skill.  I’m not sure if this video depicts someone getting lucky or cheating.  Maybe it’s a little of both.

Myself, I’ve never been much of a gambler.  For instance, I would never be able to do well at poker because I would constantly be asking the person sitting next to me if I had a good hand or not.  Blackjack is a lot more easier to play since all you have to do is just try not to go over 21.  Actually, if I ever did go on a gambling spree, I’d probably just hit the slot machines.  Or maybe the roulette wheel.

To be honest, whenever I hear the word “casino,” I think about Robert De Niro critiquing the blueberry muffins in the Martin Scorsese film of the same name.  The Ace Rothstein Dancers were my favorite part of that movie and I think they would appreciate this song because you can dance to it.

This video has a 70s-version-of-the-future feel to it, which I like.  If Logan’s Run had taken place in a casino, it probably would have looked a lot like Casino Queen.

Enjoy!