A BRILLIANT vison by William Friedkin, equally enhanced by Al Pacino's naive cop on the beat, searching for an eluisive and brutal serial killer amidst the shadows of New York's 'alternate life styles' circa 1980. This much maligned movie is one of Mr. Friedkin's finest excursions into forbidden territory.
CAUSED quite a stir in pre-release; a disclaimer had to be added, BUT for that matter it could have been set in ANY 'world', although this one did mannage to jolt a few times ....
Yes, Pacino is the naive cop - slowly awakening to 'other' potentials in this cold-hearted world of the beautiful people. It's a strange trip, you never quite know who you might bump into along the way - straight or gay - it seems to be open season, as for 'casual sex' beware! BUT that was back then.....
NOT too explicit for its time - the editing is flawless [the opening seduction scene, the graphic, yet 'non-graphic' sex, [SUPERB EDITING] then the subsequent murder - somewhat reprised in Verhoven's 'Basic Instinct' - also caused quite a fuss - and a companion piece to this one].
The story falls apart when we find 'our killer' or is this intentional? Now, does the focus fall on Pacino and his girlfriend - Karen Allen - totally oblivious of her lover's change [maybe?] Wonderful and scary moment when Pacino is making love to Allen - proving ........?
AND the conclusion? All Studs and leather .....
BUT it's all quite tame, remember all of this is set pre-cybersex.
Would be fascinating to re-visit this theme along the computer-chip route.
Highly recommended for the uninitiated - but be warned - it can be quite a bumpy ride!
[PS - GREAT Soundtrack too!]