Robert Towne is one of Hollywood's most celebrated screenwriters, but because his directorial efforts have been few and far between, anticipation was high when this star-powered crime story was released in 1988. Critical reaction was decidedly mixed, but there's plenty to admire in this silky, visually seductive film about a drug dealer (Mel Gibson) whose best friend from high-school (Kurt Russell) is now working for the Los Angeles sheriff's drug detail. Their personal and professional conflicts are intensified by their love for the same woman, a waitress (Michelle Pfeiffer) at the Italian restaurant they both frequent. There's a big deal going down with a drug lord (the late Raul Julia), but as it twists and turns, Towne's story is really more about personal loyalties and individual honor. And even if it doesn't quite hold together, the movie's got a fantastic look to it (courtesy of the great cinematographer Conrad Hall), and the three stars bring depth and dimension to their well-written roles. --Jeff Shannon
Top Customer Reviews
Set in the 1980's, T.S. is a story of deceit, and betrayal, but primarily friendships. Mel Gibson plays Dale (Mac) McKussic, a retired South Bay cocaine smuggler of legendary proportions. Gibson is one actor who plays many hero types on-screen, but who is not afraid to convey the darker aspects of a character. Many other big names in Hollywood wouldn't take on this type of role. Here Mac wants to stay out of the drug business for a more normal life. But, as he puts it, "nobody wants me to quit."
Not so much opposing him, but being the flip side of a morally dubious coin, is Lt. Nick Frescia, who heads up L.A. Sheriff's drug enforcement unit. The vastly underrated Kurt Russell plays this character as a smart, slick operator capable of breaking the law when it helps him enforce it. Like Mel, Kurt is quite capable of playing the ambiguous lead (and make you like/hate him at the same time).
To really begin to understand these the two leads, though, southern Cal native Robert Towne gets to sprinkle some marvelous, sharp dialogue to their history. Friends since youth (and probably long time rivals), these two veered to opposite, but parallel paths by an incident alluded to in early character conversations.Read more ›
I guess this is one of the best 80's movie I've seen. Mel Gibson and Michelle Pfeiffer's chemistry was awesome. Raul Julia gave one the finest performance. And I never really like Kurt Russell with his action movies...but it's an exception in this one.
Most recent customer reviews
This has always been one of my favs ... and Mel Gibson & Michelle Pfeiffer together are great!Published 11 months ago by Mary M.
Sadly this movie would not play at all for us. None of my machines would read it :( very disappointedPublished on April 15 2014 by J. S. Goodwin
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