Books and Movies Reviews

Training day

Everyday there is a war being waged on America’s inner city streets–a war between residents, drug dealers and the people sworn to protect one from the other. This war has its casualties, none greater than L.A.P.D. Detective Sergeant Alonzo Harris, a 13-year veteran narcotics officer whose questionable methodology blurs the line between legality and corruption. His optimism has long since been chipped away by his tour of duty in the streets, where fighting crime by the book can get you killed and getting the job done often requires Alonzo and his colleagues to break the laws they are empowered to enforce. This crime tale shadows Alonzo as he tests the resolve of wide-eyed, idealistic rookie Jake Hoyt, who has one day and one day only to prove himself to his fiercely charismatic superior. Over the next 24-hours, Jake will be pulled deeper and deeper into the ethical mire of Alonzo’s logic as both men put their lives and careers on the line to serve their conflicting notions of justice
It’s obvious why perennial good-guy Denzel Washington was intrigued by the malevolent role of veteran L.A.P.D. Detective Sergeant Alonzo Harris, who heads an elite, undercover narcotics squad. He’s a dedicated rogue cop who’s glib that “you gotta have a little dirt on you for anyone to trust you.” His “street justice” ethics and morality are outside the norm but he has his own ambiguous integrity. So when Jake Hoyt, an idealistic rookie, played by Ethan Hawke, wants to join his unit, Harris gives him 24 hours to prove himself saying, “You’ve got today and today only to show me what you’re made of….You’ve got to decide if you’re a sheep or a wolf.” Their day begins with drugs and alcohol, part of “getting to know the streets,” and includes extortion, execution, and a $4 million seizure, which quickly decreases to $3 million as the corrupt cops take their cut. “It’s ugly but it’s necessary,” rationalizes Harris. “Play the game, grow wise and then you can…

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