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Joe Carnahan
Gerard Butler, Frank Grillo, Alexis Louder
Writing Credits:
Kurt McLeod, Joe Carnahan

On the run from a lethal assassin, a wily con artist devises a scheme to hide out inside a small-town police station-but when the hitman turns up at the precinct, an unsuspecting rookie cop finds herself caught in the crosshairs.

Rated R.

Aspect Ratio: 2.39:1
English DTS-HD MA 5.1
English DVS
Supplements Subtitles:

Runtime: 108 min.
Price: $34.98
Release Date: 12/7/2021

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• DVD Copy


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Copshop [Blu-Ray] (2021)

Reviewed by Colin Jacobson (December 30, 2021)

Best-known for violent genre fare like 2006’s Smokin’ Aces, 2021’s Copshop brings filmmaker Joe Carnahan back to his wheelhouse. Here we find a tale of desperate criminals.

Con artist Teddy Murretto (Frank Grillo) must deal with a desperate threat. Hitman Bob Viddick (Gerard Butler) pursues him, so Teddy needs to figure out how to save his skin.

As he passes through Nevada, Teddy comes up with a daring plan: he punches rookie cop Valerie Young (Alexis Louder) and gets locked up in a remote jail. However, this doesn’t dissuade Bob, who counters the scheme in his own creative ways and lands in the same prison.

Though my friend David Williams greatly enjoyed Carnahan’s 2002 flick Narc, I found myself less enchanted via my experiences with the filmmaker’s work. I loathed Smokin’ Aces, and 2010’s A Team offered a decent but unexceptional action flick.

Still, it’d been quite a while since I’d seen anything from Carnahan. This meant I felt open to the possibility Copshop would top his earlier work.

Happily, Copshop offers a fairly effective tale. While it never approaches greatness, it creates an intriguing cat and mouse narrative.

Whereas Smokin’ Aces borrowed heavily from Quentin Tarantino, Copshop feels more evocative of John Carpenter’s 1976 flick Assault on Precinct 13. Of course, Carpenter took 1959’s John Wayne Western Rio Bravo as inspiration, but with its 1970s vibe, it feels more evocative of the Carpenter film.

Actually, Carnahan can’t resist his Tarantino side, albeit in a different form than what we saw with Aces. Back then, Carnahan more clearly echoed the wild Pulp Fiction era QT, whereas Copshop seems closer to the more relatively subdued Death Proof Tarantino.

Whatever influences Carnahan wears on his sleeve, he manages to create a mostly engaging “ambush” flick. The decision to put both predator and prey in the same jail pays off well, as this ratchets up the tension.

Much of the film’s first half concentrates on the dynamic between Teddy and Bob, and this fares pretty nicely. Grillo and Butler bounce off each other in a satisfying manner, and the rest of the police department adds to the escalating drama as well.

In terms of warped thrills, though, Copshop doesn’t really take flight until competing assassin Anthony Lamb hits the scene midway through the movie. As played by Toby Huss, the character brings a much needed breath of lunacy to the proceedings.

A veteran character actor still probably best-known as Hank’s dad Cotton from King of the Hill, Huss takes on a role that should become annoying and makes him delightful. Huss brings just the right level of quirkiness and off-beat antics to the part.

Even without Huss’s delightful turn, though, Copshop delivers a largely compelling action thriller. Nothing here innovates, but it still winds up as a solid genre effort.

The Disc Grades: Picture B+/ Audio B/ Bonus D-

Copshop appears in an aspect ratio of approximately 2.39:1 on this Blu-ray Disc. The transfer lived up to expectations.

Overall sharpness appeared good. A little softness crept into the occasional interior, but those instances stayed modest.

The movie usually seemed solid, and I noticed no shimmering or jagged edges. Edge haloes and print flaws remained absent.

Unsurprisingly, the palette opted for a moderate orange and teal orientation. The colors worked well within those limitations.

Blacks appeared dark and deep, and shadows showed good delineation. Low-light shots offered nice clarity. In the end, I felt pleased with this appealing presentation.

As for the movie’s DTS-HD MA 5.1 soundtrack, it added a bit of zip to the proceedings. A fairly chatty affair, the mix lacked a ton of zing, but it blasted music from all the channels and let the effects run wild every once in the while. This became most obvious during the handful of action sequences, and quieter scenes also showed pretty good ambience.

Audio quality worked well. Speech was concise and natural, while music – which mixed score and period songs – boasted fine range and vivacity.

Effects gave us accurate, dynamic elements without distortion. Though not an especially ambitious track, the movie’s mix seemed more than acceptable.

The disc opens with ads for No Time to Die and Stillwater. No trailer for Copshop - or other extras – show up on the Blu-ray.

A second disc provides a DVD copy of Copshop. It also lacks any extras.

As a throwback to 1970s flicks, Copshop lacks immense originality. Still, it provides a fairly taut narrative that keeps us with it pretty well. The Blu-ray brings good picture and audio but it lacks bonus materials. Expect a reasonably effective thriller here.

Viewer Film Ratings: 3 Stars Number of Votes: 1
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