Pride And Glory


Directed by: Gavin O’Connor
Written by:Joe Carnahan, Gavin O’Connor
Starring: Colin Farrell, Edward Norton, Jon Voight, Noah Emmerich, Jennifer Ehle, John Ortiz
Released: February 5, 2009
Grade: C+

Pride & Glory is a seen-it-all-before drama about good cops trying to triumph over bad cops. I generally like these kind of movies. Two of my all time favourites are L.A. Confidential and The Departed. I had high expectations for this film given the quality of the cast but there’s no suspense whatsoever.

The story begins with four New York City police officers being killed whilst undertaking a raid. We learn pretty quickly that not everything as it appears. These cops were "dirty" and there’s a bunch more who are now covering their tracks. They don’t want any evidence uncovered which can be directly traced to their dishonest activities.

The good guy in all the mayhem is Ray Tierney (Norton). He doesn’t want to get involved but he is forced by his father (Voight), a now retired cop, to head up a taskforce which will investigate the matter. In his search for the truth, he discovers that both his brother (Emmerich) and brother-in-law (Farrell) are hiding valuable evidence.

When it comes to the crunch, Ray will have to decide what comes first. Should he protect his fellow officers and the reputation of his family? Or should he risk his career and expose the deep-seeded corruption which exists within the force?

This moral dilemma that Ray faces is the most interesting patch of the movie. The first half is very slow and many characters are left undeveloped. We go through long periods where we don’t even see certain key characters. It’s a real jumble. We also know where each character stands. The problem with this is that is allows no room for any surprises.

Just when the film starts to show promise, it is ruined by a ludicrous ending full of clichés and unintended laughs. There’s a confrontation where Ed Norton and Colin Farrell slug it out in an empty bar with Irish jig music playing in the background. It’s just as ridiculous as the finale which follows.

Perhaps the film could have been saved by some outstanding performances but none of the cast step up to the plate. They just don’t have enough material or screen time to pull it off. If I had to single someone out, I’d say Jon Voight was the pick of the bunch.

Clocking in at just over two hours, Pride & Glory is an underwhelming movie.