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Crime is King

Rating: 7/10

Running Time: 120 minutes

UK Certificate: 18


Kurt Russell is Michael Zane, a recently-freed ex-convict embarking on a new crime with his old cellmate Thomas Murphy (Kevin Costner) and his gang. Murphy is a crazy and dangerous bad guy who also thinks he is an illegitimate son of Elvis. With all the gang dressed as Elvis, the plan is to rob the Riviera Casino during an Elvis convention. The robbery is successful and nets more than three million dollars, however Murphy intends to keep all the money for himself. To bring this about he shoots his partners, but Zane survives due to his wearing of a bullet-proof vest.

However, before Murphy can collect the money from its hiding place, he is involved in a car accident that delays him, allowing Zane to get there first. With single mother Cybil Waingrow (Courtney Cox) and her son Jesse (David Kaye), Zane tries to keep his appointment with the man who is to launder the money, but Cybil too has other plans. All the while, Murphy is in pursuit, wanting his money back, and he doesn't much care how he gets it. To add to their problems, federal agents are in hot pursuit.

This is a lively crime caper with some pretty intense shootouts and a lot of blood. Kurt Russell is workmanlike but not jaw-dropping as the hero of the piece. Instead, the outstanding performance comes from Kevin Costner playing against type as the brutal bad guy. Sadly, the secondary characters are less interesting – the rest of the gang have little depth and aren't alive long enough to develop, Courtney Cox has to try to make the most of a character that generates little sympathy, and at times the child is just irritating especially near the beginning. The set-piece gun battles, however, stand out as well done even if they are not particularly original.

Features cameo appearances by Ice-T and Paul Anka.

It's Got: A great bad-guy performance from Kevin Costner.

It Needs: More depth, especially to the supporting characters.

DVD Extras Nothing special comes with this basic DVD release. Extras: Trailer DVD Extras Rating: 1/10


This is an effective stylish actioner with some good shootouts, but it would need to make better use of some of its supporting characters to be really outstanding.