Miami Cops (1989)

1.0 out of 5

Bottom of the barrel, Italo-Florida cop movie from 1989 not only can't afford squibs, but has such low-budget sound design, we get a single typewriter chattering away in the background during precinct scenes. For what minimal pleasures Miami Vice provided, this movie, in comparison, cannot, or will not, sustain a single slick image. Plus the fights, gun-battles, even the props are as flimsy as is Richard Roundtree's performance.

The soundtrack of soft jazz is absent of any gritty, street grooves and holds so little promise of excitement during the action scenes, one might as well be listening to Grover Washington Jr. while making a bed.

Mismatched cops up against a dirty drug-dealing cop? The plot-line says it all.

Interesting how a movie bills itself as a film about Florida cops, yet conveniently uses almost as many Detroit exteriors as it does Roman studio interiors. And since when did they smuggle heroin from the Italian island paradise of Ischia? Roundtree co-star Michael Aronin does his best to ape Tom Cruise, but acts more like a cross between C. Thomas Howell, mouth open, and porn star Peter North mouth closed.

Cameraman Luigi Ciccarese's persistent out-of-focus shots are almost unacceptable if it weren't for the entire movie being so wobbly to begin with. Decent car wreck-ups during the finale earn a few points, but hardly make up for the movie's preceding 90 minutes of badness. It's likely a second unit crew wrestled control away from director Alfonso Brescia long enough to ensure some quality action elements made it into the picture. Roundtree wears an inexplicable raspberry maƮtre d' jacket throughout.

Maurizio Merli header graphic courtesy of Paddy O'Neill of Foxyfide Graphics