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The New Centurions

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

The New Centurions
The New Centurions.jpg
Directed byRichard Fleischer
Produced byRobert Chartoff
Irwin Winkler
Screenplay byStirling Silliphant
Based onThe New Centurions
1970 novel
by Joseph Wambaugh
StarringGeorge C. Scott
Stacy Keach
Jane Alexander
Scott Wilson
Rosalind Cash
Music byQuincy Jones
CinematographyRalph Woolsey
Edited byRobert C. Jones
Chartoff-Winkler Productions
Distributed byColumbia Pictures
Release date
  • August 3, 1972 (1972-08-03)
Running time
103 minutes
CountryUnited States
Box office$7.45 million (US/Canada rentals)[1]

The New Centurions is a 1972 Eastmancolor crime drama Panavision film based on the novel by policeman turned author Joseph Wambaugh.[2]

It stars George C. Scott, Stacy Keach, Scott Wilson, Jane Alexander, Rosalind Cash, Erik Estrada, and James Sikking, and was directed by Richard Fleischer.

YouTube Encyclopedic

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  • ✪ The New Centurions (1972 crime drama)
  • ✪ The New Centurions: Landlord Scene
  • ✪ The New Centurions (1972) Trailer


INSTRUCTOR: All right, you knuckleheads, get in step. TRAINEES: L.A.P.D. L.A.P.D. INSTRUCTOR: All right, officer, pull your weapon. Tell the suspect to get his hands up in the air. TRAINEES: Put your hands in the air. INSTRUCTOR: Line at the right. And charge! (GUN FIRE) INSTRUCTOR: Hey, set them down. Drive them straight down on the ground. O ne, ready... (SHOTGUN BLASTS) INSTRUCTOR: Get up that hill. Q uit dogging it. Get up Duran. Up the hill. Ready, three. Ready, one. (GUN FIRE) INSTRUCTOR: Let's do it again. Step back with that right foot. TRAINEES: L.A.P.D. L.A.P.D. (WHISTLE BLOWS) ♪ MARCHING BAND PLAYS THE WASHINGT O N P O ST♪ (TELEPHONE RINGING) SERGEANT: Here's a happy piece of news. Cornelius Arps, the Western Avenue pimp, got cut by one of his whores and expired at 3 a.m. in General Hospital. (CHEERS) Galloway, there are five divisions in the valley. What are they? I haven't the slightest idea. (COPS SNIGGER) Duran, you know? Anybody know? Okay. North Hollywood, Van Nuys, Foothill, West Valley and Devonshire. (WHISTLES AND WEAK APPLAUSE) SERGEANT: As of tonight, all juvenile narcotic arrests are to be turned over to the detectives. Everybody got that? Sergeant, should we book 'em first? Do we book 'em first? That's a good question. I'll let you know tomorrow. SERGEANT: Well, let's see what else is new in crime. Attempted rape. Last night, 11:30 p.m. 369 West 37th Place. Suspect awoke victim by placing hand over her mouth. Said, "Don't move. I love you. I wanna prove it." Fondled victim's private parts while he held a blue steel revolver in the air for her to see. Suspect wore a blue suit, blue tie and dark shoes. Blue suit? Sounds like a policeman. Male, negro, 28 to 30, 6'2", 190, medium complexion. I think we can clean this up right now. Sounds like Gladstone. Lots of crime in the division last night. None of these suspect descriptions are worth a damn. So I'm not gonna read them. All right, gentlemen, let's get out on the street. Dismissed. PHILLIPS: I hope to be able to be back to work in a couple of days. Phil! How come you're not suited up? I've got a jaw infection. You don't sit on your gums. Damn it all, on account of you I'm paired off with one of those slick-sleeved recruits. Hey, I wouldn't mind paying her bail tonight. - So long, kid. - See you in a couple of days, Whitey. You're getting prettier every day, I swear. Killed in the line of duty. It doesn't pay to get too comfortable on the street. I don't know if I'll ever get comfortable. You will. Come on, let's go find a black and white and go to work. (CAR HORN) This division's mostly black. Some Mexicans, some whites, lots of crime. Well, considering the intensity of living conditions and poverty, I'm surprised there's not more crime. Well, I think it's just the city. In any case, Kilvinsky's law states: Treat everybody the same. White, black, brown. Be civil to everyone, courteous to nobody. That's just a little philosophy lesson I give free to every rookie I'm breaking in. POLICE RADIO: 12-0-20, roger. Remember, these dudes out here aren't afraid of that badge or gun. Matter of fact, they'll try to shove that badge up your ass just to say they did it. And all that Hollywood crap about the karate expert and the one-punch cop is, er... A lotta Hollywood crap. That's right. We're supposed to use equal force, you know. - Right. - Yeah well... Rule two of Kilvinsky's law is if a dude uses his fist, you use your stick. If he uses a knife, you use your gun. Cancel his ticket right then and there. If everything fails, hit him with a brick, anything you can get. So, what do your friends call you? Sergio. The reason I let you start off driving, Sergio, is so you'd get to know the streets faster. (POLICE RADIO CHATTER) This would be a quiet district if it wasn't for the Logos gang. DURAN: Er, Falcons. Which gang were you? Gavilones. You know, a few years ago, I probably would've busted you. A few years ago, you probably did. (POLICE RADIO CHATTER) MAN: (SHOUTING) You never take care o' the kids or nothin'. (CROCKERY BREAKING) - MAN: Why don't you shut up?! - (KNOCKING ON DOOR) WOMAN: Oh, come in. MAN: You brought the cops this time? MAN: What the hell's the matter with you? WOMAN: You get out. WOMAN: Officer, he's gotta go. He's a damn nut. WHITEY: Quiet! - But, Whitey, listen... - Quiet. - Whitey. - Now, Holly, you stay here and talk to my partner. - But, Whitey... - Orville, you come on in the kitchen. - I wanna tell you about her... - You shut up, you dirty old man! Oh, he's no man, officer. - Don't listen to him. - It's okay, we're here. - Come on, you gotta listen to me. Bad nigger. He picked me up in a gin mill. He said I was his pay cheque. And would I go in there and cash it for him. He said he'd give me $10 if I did. Where are you supposed to meet him with the money? He didn't say. What does he look like? 20, 25... Red shirt! That's one thing I know. - He had on a red shirt. - Yeah. You just look for a red shirt. Why don't you jump in the car with us and we'll see if we can find him? Come on. Here we go. Stuff her in there. Don't let her hit her head. Yeah, yeah, I got.. We can take him in on 273-D. - The lady says he's been... - Wait a minute, partner. She says her husband's been assaulting her. - Assaulting her? - Yes, assaulting... WHITEY: Hold it! Now, listen. You two people are unhappy together, right? - That's right. - Right. What would make you happy? Would you be happy if you could get a divorce? - Happier than anything in the world. - All right. I'll divorce you. Put your hand on my badge. Come on, both of you. Raise your hand. "By the powers vested in me in and through the state of California "and the city of Los Angeles as well, I do now pronounce you divorced." - Oh, thank you. - Yeah. - Congratulations. - Thank you. Oh, thank you. Oh, hey, you're a wonderful boy. And you're wonderful too, Whitey. Bye. - Bye. - Bye. Bless you, Whitey. - Screw you, Orville. - There you go all over again. POLICE RADIO: 5-45, a family dispute, 1st and Soto. FEHLER: That guy's got a brown shirt, Andy. The lady said "red". KILVINSKY: Hold it right there. I wanna talk to you. - Who, me? - Yeah, you. - Identification. - What for? I stopped you for a reason. Now, break out that ID, because we ain't got no time for shucking. Okay, I ain't got nothin' to hide. It's just that the police is always rousting me every time I goes outside. Hell, man, this ain't nothing. Got something with your thumbprint, your picture, a driver's licence? What I need a driver's licence for? I ain't driving. Haven't I seen you? What have you been busted for? Forgery, flimflam? No, man. I gambles a little bit. Now, I ain't no criminal now, no jive. Yeah, you're jiving. Your mouth's dry, your heart's hammering. What's your real name? Gandy. Woodrow Gandy. Just like it say on that card. Step over to the car, Gandy. Somebody wants to say hello. Oh, man, this is a roust. This is a humbug and a roust. Wake her up. FEHLER: Ma'am? Wake up, ma'am. That's him! That's the one got me in all of this trouble. Telling me how easy it was to make $10! Hey, listen, Duran. Do you mind if I ask you something? Why did you come with the department? Eleven grand a year and a chance to get out of East L.A. - Get to some place like the Westside? - That's right. - Like Hollywood? - Right. Where you get all those actresses and honey-blondes? Right. And here they put you back in East L.A. Right. Thanks. - Hey, Andy. - What's up? One thing I don't understand. The guy we picked up, he wasn't wearing a red shirt. Yeah, I felt a little bad about that. Look at it this way. Maybe you'll catch somebody with a red shirt tomorrow. Come on. Come on, really. Well, it wasn't green either, it was a colour that could be called red. Especially if you're fuzzy drunk like the old lady. - Great burritos. - Best in town. But how'd you know he was the right guy? Well, this guy, Gandy, was standing there, you know, a little too cool, like he had nothing to hide. I honestly don't know how I knew, I just knew. Take it from me, kid. After 23 years, he can smell 'em. - Instinct, huh? - Well, I wouldn't say that in court. Will you have trouble with this in court? - Probably might. - Yeah... - I'm sorry. - No, go ahead. We might, it depends on whether or not the court feels it was enough probable cause to stop and detain the suspect. Well, Roy's a very bright guy. He's going to law school. Right now? Actually, I'm still in college. I'm picking up on a few prerequisites. What are you wasting your time being a cop for? Well, it's like this, Whitey. I'm interested in criminal law. I'm in school, a wife and a kid. I need the money. So it's either this or become a criminal. Probably wind up being a judge. You're not listening, Andy. He said he didn't wanna be a criminal. What about you, Beasley, how many kids you got? - Three. - Three? What do you do in your spare time? Go to medical school? No, I just hope I can do this job. I mean, I only wanna be a good policeman. That's all I... RADIO D.J.: O kay, all you late-nighters, that was a triple play for your musical enjoyment. It's the early morning sound of K. G. G. Y. 2:22 in the a.m., and it's too late, baby... ♪ IT'S T OO LATE ♪ - Hi gang. - H i. Are you all right? I'm fine. Who's the artist? Rebecca did the artwork and I did the copy. - Well, it's a masterpiece. - Yeah, that's what I... Hey, muffin. H i. She's so tired. She waited up till midnight to surprise you. Couldn't stay up quite this late. Oh, I didn't realize it was so late. I should've called. Did anything go wrong? No, we just got rapping. Shop talk. I wanna hear all about it. She's got to go to bed. Come on, love. Bedtime for you. Oh, sleepy girl. Come on, Daddy put you to bed. Okay, little girl. Thank you for that beautiful picture. Good night. Sweet dreams. Who's your partner? Oh, Kilvinsky. If you like him, let's have him over to dinner. Sure. - Is he married? - Divorced. Then he'd probably appreciate a home-cooked meal, huh? Sure. Oh, Roy, I wish you could have seen Becky. She was trying so hard to stay awake. I must have told her about 13 stories trying to keep her up. She wanted nothing more than to see your face when you walked through that door and looked at that picture. (TRAFFIC HUMS) KILVINSKY: One day down here is like 10 in the other divisions. You'll be a veteran by the time your year is up. (SOUL AND JAZZ MUSIC DRIFTS IN AND OUT) KILVINSKY: Pimping is profitable. That's why it's not legalized. Too much profit and no overhead. Pimps would control the economy in no time. So what are we doing in the whore wagon? Why arrest them? For cruising the streets, for being whores? No crime in that. Make an arrest that'll stick, that's the tough part. Unless you don't mind perjuring yourself in court. I knew a whore, had 73 prior arrests. Most she got was six months on two separate occasions. So, what's the answer? We're left with only one weapon with which to safeguard society. Kilvinsky's law. I might have known. Kilvinsky's law states: Give 'em one pass down Western Avenue, just to show them the wagon's out. If they don't run for cover, pick 'em up and run 'em around for a couple of hours, and generally bust up their evening. It's as illegal as hell, but it works. Okay, let's take those three. (VAN HORN HONKS) Good evening, ladies. Shit, Kilvinsky, you always pick on me. Oh, hi there. Hi there. - Give me a lift, honey. - Certainly. Just grab a handful and push. Keep your hands off of me. Come on, Martha. You're holding up the parade. Officer Fehler, would you kindly escort the young lady to her seat? Come and get it, honky. Come on, Martha, take it easy. - I gotta take you in. - Why? Well, Martha, you're the prettiest girl on the block. Shit. (CAR HORN HONKS) Got two more for you, Andy. All right, let's go. Yeah, you blue-eyed devil, you ought to make sergeant for this. She doesn't like you, Bethel. Nobody likes this funky devil. He don't know how to talk to a woman. I don't see any women, just two whores. Your wife's a whore, bastard. She screws for peanuts. I gets $60 every day. Get in the wagon, bitch. You ain't gonna get away with pushing me around, you hear me? We're gonna fix your white ass one day. KILVINSKY: All right, Alice, you've played your big scene. Now, lay in the wagon like the sweet child you are. That there sucker, he don't know how to talk right to nobody. He thinks everybody is dogs. Well, we is motherfuckin' ladies. Hey, Kilvinsky, you all need some pillows back here. This is terribly bumpy. Your pillow's built in, baby. Hey, silver hair, how about letting us out over on Vermont? I need to make me some coins tonight. Kilvinsky's got soul. He get us some Scotch and milk if we ask him pretty. You got soul, ain't you, Mr. Kilvinsky? Baby, I got more soul than I can con-trol. (WOMEN HOWL WITH LAUGHTER) (MUFFLED CHATTER, LAUGHTER) FEHLER: All right, ladies, here comes the delivery man. Here's the Scotch. And your change is in this bag with the milk. Want a drink, Kilvinsky? You know we can't drink on duty. I know something we can do on duty. And the sergeant won't smell it on your breath. (WOMEN WHOOP AND LAUGH) I'm too old for you young ladies. Hey, Kilvinsky, gal like me can make you young again, you beautiful, honky devil. (WOMEN SHRIEK AND LAUGH) - Count your stars, baby. - Yeah. (ENGINE STARTS) Hey, wait a minute. I got one. Let her tell it. Let her tell it. - Wait, wait, wait. - Let her tell it. This one trick picks me up one night over on 28th and Western and drives me out clear to Beverly Hills. (WHOOPING) - Beverly Hills? - That's right. And gives me a hundred bucks. Shut up! - I don't believe it. - Hundred bucks? And then that bastard had me cut the head off a real live chicken, right there in that plushy apartment. And squish that old chicken around in the sink while the water was running. WOMEN: Urghhhh! HOOKER: And he nearly went crazy. - And Lord, why'd you do it? - Yeah, why'd you do it? Shit, I didn't know what the bastard wanted till he got me in there and handed me the butcher knife. Butcher knife? And I was so scared, I just did it so he wouldn't get mad. You know, that milk bath guy picked up Wilma one night. Didn't he, Wilma? Speaking of milk, pass it right on down here. Scotch ain't no good without milk. Thank you, honey. Yeah, but he ain't too weird. I don't mind him, though, except he lives too far away. Up in North Hollywood, in one of them hilltop pads. ALL: (CHATTERING) He just gives you a bath in a tub full o' milk. ALL: (CHATTERING) "Anybody wanna feel my lily-white skin?" ALL: (SHRIEKING) (LAUGHING) People is getting so goddamn weird anymore. - Yeah, they are. - Sure. Seem like only black men like to ball. You take black tricks, baby? She'll take any kind of tricks she can get. ALL: (SHRIEKING) Well, I guess we can let 'em out now. They're too drunk to work tonight, anyway. We've done our good deed for society. WOMEN: (LAUGHING AND SHOUTING) All right, ladies. Everybody out. Habeas corpus has arrived for one and all. WOMEN: (CHEERING) KILVINSKY: Get mama down, will ya? Yeah! WILMA: Thank you. Bye-bye. ALICE: Goodbye. Come on, baby. WOMEN: (SHRIEKING AND LAUGHING) Hey, we just got robbed, man. He just ran down that alley. He hit me with his gun. Does this alley come out down here? Yeah, it goes through. - I'll try the alley, cut him off. - I'll call in. - They got everything, everything we... - Take it easy, son. 3-A-5-4, Code 6, Adam. (FOOTSTEPS) Freeze! (GUN FIRES) (DOG BARKING) It had to be... MAN: My father! My father! You killed him! You killed my father! He was chasing the robber and you killed him! You killed my father! Pig! WHITEY: Gus. Gus, call an ambulance right now. Now! Pig! (POLICE RADIO CHATTER) I'll tell you something right now. If it'd happened to me, I'da done the same thing. You had no choice. Comes down to something like that, you have no choice. Hell, it was just as much my fault as yours. I let the guy run out of the store with a gun in his hand. I did it. I did it. I'll pull over to the side, kid. (POLICE RADIO CHATTER) (ENGINE STOPS) KILVINSKY: Good evening. I'm the one who made the call. There's a lady in that house who's always drunk. Is she bothering you? No, but she's got a new baby, and she drops him all the time. Tonight, she's in there staggering around, and I saw her drop him again. My husband told me it wasn't any of our business but I told him I was gonna call the police. That's what I did. - All right, we'll talk with her. - FEHLER: Thank you. What do you want? Good evening, ma'am. We received a call that there might be some trouble. We came over to help. Do you mind if we step in? I know how the police help. Look, lady, we were told your baby might be in some danger. How about just letting us look to see if the kid's okay? We'll be on our way. Get off my porch. - Get off! You too. - BABY: (CRYING) Out, out, out. Hey, you can't just go ahead... Hey! Where's he going? - He's my baby! - BABY: (SCREAMING) WOMAN: What do you think you're doing? Just leave him alone. KILVINSKY: My God. You just can't walk in here without telling me something. Will ya take it easy! She put him on the kitchen table next to an ashtray. He burned his hand. Looks like his stomach, too. I said that's my child. - Hey, give me my child. - Take it easy, just take it easy. All right, get ahold of her. Give me my baby! Give me my baby. - Give it here. It's my baby! - BABY: (SCREAMING) - Let go, Andy. Let go. - My baby. You're pulling her apart! - Don't drop it! - It's mine. Mine! FEHLER: Lady, take your fingers... You're choking your baby! FEHLER: Pry her fingers loose. WOMAN: It's my baby. It's my baby. KILVINSKY: Okay, I got her. FEHLER: Let go! Let go! FEHLER: All right, lady, that's it. That's it. WOMAN: You keep your filthy hands off of me. BABY: (CRYING) No! BABY: (SCREAMING) FEHLER: Damn it! WOMAN: Hey, let me...! Let me go. Let me go. You can't take my baby. Like hell I can't. Get her in the car. Let's go, lady. You know, there was a moment there when I really thought I could kill her. I mean, I really wanted to kill her. Maybe I should have killed her. It would be better off for the child. - It is tempting. - It's more than that. Well... Stay frosty, kid. You can't become an avenging angel. Look out the window. There's always another asshole on the street. You can't stop them all no matter what you do. So you do your 20 and take your 40 percent and relax. (DOOR CLOSES) - Hi, sweetheart. - H i. - How are ya? - Fine. Give Daddy a kiss? All ready for school? There's a boy I don't like. Well... - Hi, honey. - H i. - Breakfast? - No, thanks. You'll be late for work. Well, I can fix you some eggs. No eggs. That's the trouble with this all-night watch. I eat breakfast at 7 before I hit the sack. And when I get up, I don't want anything heavier than breakfast. Then, about 11 o'clock, before I go back to work, I grab a couple of eggs. You know, I'm eating breakfast three times a day. If it annoys you so much, why don't you get off the night watch? It doesn't annoy me, night watch is okay. Well, you're complaining. I'm not... (HAMMERING) What the hell is that? What's going on here? It's the plumber. He's promised to be quiet as he can. Come, Becky, you're gonna be late. And I'll be late for work. The plumber? Dorothy, don't leave me with the plumber all day. I gotta get some sleep. Couldn't he come back in the afternoon, Dorothy? Dorothy? Dorothy, answer me. The john hasn't been working right for three days. And, unless he came now, he couldn't come until after 6, which means he gets time-and-a-half. Now, the man gets $18 an hour as it is. So that means that after 6 o'clock his time is worth more than yours and mine put together. Oh, I see, his time is more valuable than mine, huh? I didn't say "valuable". I said it was worth more. - What's the difference? - There's a difference. Yeah, I know. I'd like to know what though. Simply that on the open market, a man who can make your toilet flush is worth more money than a cop and a secretary, combined. All right, Dorothy. I know, you're making the world a better place to live in. Hey, look, could you please stop that for just a moment? Everhere but for us kids at home. - Here's your mail. - Thanks. Aren't you going to open it? Later. Just curious. Curious about my mail? Curious why you're not curious. All right, then here, why don't you just open it yourself? All right, I will. "Dear Mr. Fehler. "The following grades are hereby submitted for the term ending November 30th: "Economics 5-A, incomplete. "Corporate Law 27-A, incomplete." And there's two other "incompletes" here. That's all right, I'm not worried about it. I'll finish them. Finish them? You never even started them. As far as law school goes, you'll never get there. I will, Dorothy, as soon as I get off the night watch. It isn't the night watch. "The night watch"! Come on, Becky. Hey, Dorothy, what is it with you? You have been hounding me all morning. What is it? You're just having a wonderful time. You like it. You like being a cop. Well, of course I like it. It doesn't mean I'm not working my ass off. I don't give a damn how hard you work. You like it, and I don't wanna spend the rest of my life being a cop's wife. Then you'd better get married to somebody else. - Oh, boy. Oh, boy. - (HAMMERING CONTINUES) Come on, Becky. Listen, will you do me one favour? Tell that $18-an-hour asshole to stop before he breaks the house down. Why don't you bust him for disturbing the peace? Becky. I'm sorry. I know it's dumb, but I'm scared. It's not like you can't get hurt as a cop. And I miss you. I don't see you, you know? It's dumb, but I miss you, and Becky misses you. I guess I just feel I don't have enough attention paid to me, and I get hurt. Come here. I know. I know. (TRUCK ENGINE REVS) (PATROL CAR HORN SOUNDS) Can I see your driver's licence, please? You're going to try and say I ran a red light, huh? - 3-8-13. - DRIVER: Man, the light was yellow! Request wanted, warrant information on California licence plates... Step over here, please. Just got to get your quota, don't you, man? No, as a matter of fact, they passed a new law recently. I can write as many of these as I want to now. Just any nigger would do, wouldn't it? That's it, ain't it? And I just happened to be the one you picked, huh? This guy's got six warrants out on him, all moving violations. - Can you sign this, please? - I ain't signing that. All right, you don't have to sign it, but I want you to get in that patrol car. If you want to, you can lock your truck. - I ain't going. - I don't think you understand. - You're under arrest. - No, you don't understand. I ain't going nowhere. 3-A-13, 3-A-13, requesting an ambulance. 137 South San Pedro. - Over. - What's he doing? - What you doing? - Calling an ambulance. There's no accident around here. I know, but there's gonna be if you don't get in that patrol car. Guess I'm getting in the car. (POLICE RADIO CHATTER) You better cancel that ambulance, Roy. I never called an ambulance. You mean you were bluffing? That's right. First time I ever laughed on the way to jail. You know, when that guy thought I called an ambulance he got so unglued he didn't even know what to say. Tell you the truth, neither did I. Well, don't worry about it, I won't tell anybody else, not even Whitey. How about if I buy you a cup of coffee, smart-ass? All right. You know, I love it. I really love it in the streets. I don't think I love anything else so much. I know. Oh, hey. A picture of my newest grandchild. Yeah, she's a beauty. When I retire next year, I'm gonna live with my daughter. Hey, how about Mabel's? It's a new doughnut shop. I hear their coffee's so bad you can pour it in your battery. But it's free, and so is the doughnut. - You look in that liquor store? - No, why? Nobody behind the counter. - Maybe they're in the back room. - Maybe. Let's take a look, anyway. I'll take the back. You request help and cover the front. Right. 3-A-13. Officers need help. 113 and Western. 2-11 in progress. Over. Oh, my God. Get this car the hell out of here. (SHOTGUN BLAST) - (FOOTSTEPS RUNNING) - (CAR DOOR SLAMS) - (ENGINE REVS) - (CAR DRIVING AWAY) (TYRES SKIDDING) (GUN FIRE) I'll get an ambulance. (COUGHING) HOSPITAL TANNOY: Dr. Taylor, Dr. David Taylor... PLEBESLY: Andy, have you ever been shot? No, not even nicked. I wonder if I could take it. What? What Roy's going through. They say a stomach wound's the most painful of anything. Well, if it hurts, it hurts, whether you can take it or not. HOSPITAL TANNOY: Dr. Browne, Dr. Ross Browne... Yeah. Except somebody fired point-blank at him and it almost cut him in two. It's like dying without dying. Roy's got to be different now, doesn't he? Yes, I suppose he does at that. When do you think we'll be able to see him? Well, he's been out of intensive care about seven-and-a-half-hours now. I guess he's still a little dopey, though. I know, I know. He's gonna be fine. Yes, this time. Four, five weeks, he'll be out of here. Few months of light duty, and then... Yes, then what? Back in the streets. Walking around like a target. You mustn't look at it that way. Oh, how should I look at it? Tell me, how did your wife look at it? - We had our problems. - Who cares if he gets killed? You think people care? People don't care. Just another cop as far as they're concerned. And it's going to get worse, not better. Oh, Andy, help me. (SOBS) He listens to you. Tell him he's got to quit. I can't. He's his own man. He's doing what he wants to do. And I want you to go home and get some rest and stop thinking. NURSE: Mr. Kilvinsky, you can go in now. HOSPITAL TANNOY: Dr. Carmen, Dr. Kenneth Carmen. Hiya, partner. Hey, Andy. You need anything from the nurse? Gus and everybody wants to see you. I don't wanna see anybody, not yet. I feel so dumb. I don't wanna see anybody. I really don't. Okay, partner. Okay. - Oh, Christ! - You want me to get the doctor? Oh, no. They gave me all they could give me. God, it just keeps tightening. Tightening. I feel like I'm glued together. (HISPANIC VOICES) Are you the one who called? The bastards threatened to shoot me. - Who? - Damn wetbacks. They're two months behind in their rent. I've tried to be patient. A man has got expenses. You think my creditors are gonna wait? - They pull a gun on you? - Just like 'em. Well, we can't evict, but we can investigate a gun charge. - What apartment are they in? - Upstairs, in the back. You talk to them. Tell them to pay up or you'll throw 'em the hell out. (MEZICAN RADIO PLAYS) (DURAN SPEAKS IN SPANISH) (MAN RESPONDS IN SPANISH) (DURAN SPEAKS IN SPANISH) (MAN REPLIES IN SPANISH) - What's he say? - They don't have a gun. And even if they did, they wouldn't use it for a stupid thing like this. Ask them about the rent and let's get out of here. He's got last month's receipt. So the landlord is lying. They're not two months behind. Only 10 days. He says they lost their jobs, but they're starting new ones today. And they'll be able to pay him next week. Well, the man says they're wetbacks. Is that true? How much does he charge them to live here? $50 each, for the month. Each? Fifty each for this? You son of a bitch. (SLAP) - Goddamned extortionist. - Sarge. I'll sue you. I'll sue the city. - Three hundred bucks a month? - I'm a taxpayer. I'll have your ass for this. I'll get them spics deported. I'll call Immigration. I know where they work. - I'll call their boss. - You'll do nothing. All right, they're wetbacks. They're here illegally. But they're breaking their asses to make a buck. Doing bottom-of-the-barrel jobs that nobody else wants. And a creep like you is gonna hassle them? All right, you call Immigration. You go right ahead. I'll call the Health Department, the rat catchers and Building and Safety. And, if that doesn't work, I'll come back and I'll beat the shit out of you. You'll wish to God you'd never seen me. Hey, take it easy. Listen, I played two-and-a-half hours of handball. I ran three or four laps. I'm getting myself in terrific shape. Yeah, you are. - How do you like it on the desk? - Oh, I've just had it. I mean, it's hardly fascinating. It's so boring. All I do is tell everybody how I got shot. Yeah, they all want to be reassured that it couldn't happen to them. - And they want you to reassure them. - Right. Ah, you'll be back on patrol soon, anyway. I hope so. It'll sure be good to get back on the streets. But after Andy retires, it won't be the same. I'll probably transfer to the Vice Squad. I wish you well. (CAR HORNS) 1-A-58, roger on the call. Man, I hate these damn silent alarms. I wonder why this early. There's not much money in the till at this hour. Around here, man, cats'll burn you down for $10. (TYRES SCREECH) Wait a minute. What do you want? What's in the bag? COP: Freeze or your head's coming off. Cool it. Cool it. Out of my way. (HOSTAGE SQUEALS) BANK ROBBER: Hold it! Stay back there. HOSTAGE: Let me go. (POLICE SIRENS WAIL) (TYRES SCREECH) (HOSTAGE SOBBING) Get out of the way. (SHOTGUN COCKS) (GUN FIRES) (GUN FIRES) (GUN FIRES) (GUNFIRE) (SHOTGUN FIRES) (SIRENS WAILING) (TYRES SCREECH) KILVINSKY: Get an ambulance. (HANDCUFFS LOCK) Only natural. Everybody's scared. I'm not scared. I'm not scared. If we can have the attention of the Wright brothers maybe we can get down to work. Before I read the crimes, I wanna give you a report on the supervisors' meeting today. Here's another goddamn interpretation from our Supreme Court. Something about only the room that you arrest the guy in being under his control. Don't ask me what it means. Just pick up a copy of the new rules and get somebody who's smarter than I am to explain it to you. - Thanks for everything, Sergeant. - Andy. You're in trouble. Good luck. - Good luck, Andy. - Don't catch too many fish. Good luck. - Adios, wetback. - Adios, Andy. - Take care of yourself. - Good luck. - We're gonna miss you. - Take care, Andy. I didn't think you'd really pull the pin, Andrew. Well, you know, 25 years is enough, Whitey. Yeah, once you pull that pin, Andy, you gotta let her go. Blow up in your face. I'm gonna live with my daughter. She's gonna have a baby. Congratulations, Grandpa. That's great. You guys gotta come and see me, meet the family. - Sure. - Sure. Read the crimes, Sergeant, before I start bawling. This goddamn Kilvinsky's gonna make me cry with all this goodbye shit. I don't have to stay around here and take all this abuse. Had a kind of interesting homicide this afternoon. Some dude told his old lady she was a bum, so she shot him. Twice. He fell off the porch and broke his leg and she polished him off with a kitchen knife. - Hey, Sarge. - What? - Maybe she was a bum lay. - ALL: (LAUGHING) - (LOUNGE MUSIC PLAYS) - (APPLAUSE) I'm glad I'm out of it. We're through. We're finished. You know that, don't you? Hey, come on, Andy, you know better than that. No, I don't. Not anymore. We can't hold the line anymore. Yeah, but, you know, things change. People change. Last year, everybody's screaming about lack of freedom. This year, they're screaming about lack of control. Yeah, but something else is happening this time. The 'don'ts'. The 'don'ts' are dying. First, the vice laws die, and then the misdemeanors and then the felonies. Easy to get rid of crime. All you do is change the law. No law against selling dope... dope's not a crime. No law against robbing banks... bang! Ain't no bank robber. Fighting crime is getting very easy. Well, let the assholes change the laws and get rid of crime. They can't get rid of evil. Laws change, people don't. Never get rid of evil, never. It sounds like all these years, you've been trying to bust the Devil. Oh, the public don't understand. Lawyers, judges don't understand. They only see the criminals. We see the victims. We know what crime does to people. We see 'em like nobody else does. Yeah, you're right. Maybe you can't change people, but you can help them. Maybe not much, maybe it's a losing battle. Maybe they don't like us, but I think they need us. I think they always have. I mean, even the Romans had the centurions to keep the peace. And they were unsupported, unhonoured, disliked, just like us. But they held the line, for a while. Until Rome was finally overrun by Barbarians. Yeah. Well, here's to the new centurions. Let's hope they do a better job than the old ones. (SOUND OF TYPING) You must be Feller, huh? Fehler. - Phillips. - H i. - Simeone. - H i. - Ranatti. - How are you? Good to have you. - You already met Gant, huh? - Right. I was briefing him on the chicken shit expense allowance we get here. Gant, Sgt. Anders wanted me to talk to you about that Ruby Castle bust. He still thinks you and Ranatti exaggerated your report. You don't think I'd perjure myself, do you? How about you, Ranatti? Hell, we're the only ones to ever have a case against Ruby Castle. If Anders don't buy it, screw him. Just because he's bucking to be the youngest captain on the L.A.P.D., even if it kills us. Sergeant Anders. Roy Fehler. Nice to meet you. Nice to meet you. - Welcome aboard, Fehler. - Thank you. Be seated. Tonight, we work trash patrol. - Oh, not again. - Oh, no, not again. ANDERS: All right, knock it off. Let's move out. PHILLIPS: What a pain in the ass. I forgot, I wore my good clothes. GANT: What's the matter? Either way, you go home smelling like garbage. PHILLIPS: Fehler, now you can tell your friends you're a G-man. But don't tell them the G is for garbage. ANDERS: Did you find something, Fehler? - Yeah, as a matter of fact, I did. - Go on. A corned beef on rye, a blueberry cheese blintz and a Tampax. Did you guys find anything? Did you find anything, Gant? Garbage, garbage. Dirty, rotten, stinking, lousy, filthy garbage. All right, all right. I realize that trash night is a dirtyjob. But I have it on good authority that these trash cans came from one of the biggest bookie organisations in this city. We're bound to find some betting markers here. Now, keep looking, men. Nobody said that police work was easy. This could be the big break I'm looking for. This could be bigger than all of us. PHILLIPS: Let me warn you about fruits. They can look like anybody. Big manly guys with wives and kids, good jobs. Or they can be professional men, or even cops. When they find out you're the law, those sons of bitches come uncorked. So get the cuffs on 'em fast. I say don't get yourself hurt for a lousy misdemeanor pinch that don't mean a damn in court, anyway. You know what the average fruit gets? - No. - About a $50 fine and that's it. So, what am I supposed to do, Sergeant, Just walk around the lake? Well, if you wanna swish a little, go ahead, swish. Oh, come on, come on, that's entrapment. I'll worry about the law. You just do the job you're being paid to do. Yeah, well, I'm not being paid to swish. I'm going to ignore that statement, Fehler. Now, you won't have any trouble recognizing him. Six-foot-six, all muscle. He's a lumberjack from Oregon. Comes down here to get his rocks off. Oh, man, this is a shitty and degrading job. Somebody's got to do it. But as far as I'm concerned, you don't have to let him feel your joint. If it looks like he's making a move to honk you, you just grab his hand. Then he's under arrest. - Okay, Fehler? - Thanks, Sergeant. All right. Get out there. (WHISPERING) Don't forget to swish! It's a lovely evening, isn't it? Yeah, it is. The moon is beautiful. (SPLASH) I like to watch the ripples. Don't you? I don't really think about it too much. All right, that's it! Come on, boys. Go get him. (BIG SPLASH) (SPLASHING) Get him. (PUNCH) ANDERS: I got him. I got... Don't let him get away. Help! Police! Police! Help! Roy? Dorothy? What are you doing here? When did you get home? A little while ago. What a nice surprise. - Is Becky asleep? - No. Becky stayed in San Francisco with Mother. H i. I wasn't expecting you till the weekend. I'm glad to see you, though. Boy, did we have a night. Jesus. A bunch of us went down to MacArthur Park to bust fruits. And what happened? Well, we staked the joint out, and we ended up wrestling in the lake with some poor fruit. I mean, it really bothered me. Here I am, a grown man. I'm supposed to be protecting society. And I feel like I'm more depraved than that poor guy. I don't know. It just disturbed me, that's all. Roy, I'm leaving you. You're what? When did you decide this? I don't know. It's been coming on a long time, I guess. I guess after Kilvinsky retired and you decided to stay on and go on to Vice. I guess that's what did it. Yeah, but, Dorothy, I'm... I hate this assignment. - I'm not gonna be doing this forever. - It doesn't matter, Roy. It doesn't have anything to do with that. And it has nothing to do with your being a policeman anymore. And it's not because I'm a girl who doesn't like to be alone. Or because I worry about you. I stopped worrying about you months ago. I learned months ago to go to bed by myself. It's none of those dumb cliche reasons, Roy. Then what is it? I just don't care anymore. Why? Oh, Roy. What about Becky? What about her? I'm her father. You're taking my daughter away from me. I can't help that. Hey, Dorothy, you're taking my daughter away from me! No! You've done that, Roy. You risked too much, Roy. Your health, your life, your family. For what? To keep some psychotic kid from holding up a liquor store? I don't understand that, Roy. I grew up in a house where those you love come first. You and Kilvinsky, you're two of a kind. Only the sad thing is that you could have been something better. - Goodbye, Roy. - Wait a minute. Before you go, I'd just like to ask you something. In all the time we were together, did you ever say: "Whatever you wanna do, Roy, I'll back you up. "I'll see it through, no matter what." You know, when I quit school you gave me the feeling that I cheated you. It was like I'd deprived you of something more. That my being a policeman wasn't good enough. Well, that's what I am. But you want something more. You don't want me. So go on, fly home to Mother. If it brings you any comfort, let's leave it that way. I let you down. I'm not letting Becky go. Dorothy, do you hear me? I'm not letting her go! (DOOR SLAMS) Get a haircut. - Been eating at Fat Jacks' again? - That's right, Sergeant. The top stains above the tie bar look like chicken gumbo. What are the others, barbeque sauce? With green pepper, Sir. When do you change the oil on this tie? Every 10,000 miles, Sergeant. All right, let's get out in the street. Dismissed. Yes, Sir, what can we do for you? - I used to work in this division. - Hang on. Yeah? Great. Well, what can I do for you? My name's Kilvinsky. I... Now that's what I call one hell of a guy! Comes all the way from Florida just to give old Marty a cupie doll. What are you doing here? - What are you doing around here? - I'm just checking up on you. His daughter kicked him out of Florida. - They got a small house. - Where can we reach you? - I'll be around. I'll look for work. - You shouldn't have trouble. - Andy! - Hey, Roy. - Hey, we gotta go. - Okay. - Nice seeing you. - Stop in again. - All right. - Good to see you. Johnson, this is the guy I was telling you about. This is Andy Kilvinsky. He used to own this division. - How do you do? - Fine. - I'll see you out at the car. - Okay. Come on, walk me out. Good to see you. - Yes. - When did you get here? - Can we get together later on? - Wait a minute. How's Florida? With those three grandchildren and that little house I think I was better off in the street. This is for Becky. Oh, thanks, Andy. I'll send it to her. She's up in San Francisco with her mother. Well, what else is new? Well, I'm off Vice. That's always good to hear. Dorothy's divorcing me. - Oh, for sure? - Yeah, for sure. She met some realtor in Sausalito. He's a nice guy, apparently. Owns a helicopter. - Gee, it's good to see you, Andy. - You too. You won't believe this town, how it's changed. I'll bet. I'll have to show you around. Have to get together, you free? - Hell, yes. - Good. Where can I reach you? Well, I'll leave my number at the desk. OK, I'll give you a call. - Andy? - Yeah? Nothing. I'll talk to you. Roy? Andy. Did I wake you? Oh, gee, I didn't mean to wake you. I'm sorry. Fine, fine, fine. Sorry I woke you. I didn't mean to wake you. Hell, no. I'm not drunk. I repeat myself all the time without any help at all. You'll do it next year, you wait and see. Listen, er... What are you doing? No, I mean tomorrow. Besides that. Oh, yeah, yeah. Well, erm... Give Becky my love, huh? Yeah. Listen, wait a second, will you? Did I ever tell you about the old guy on the porch who used to sit in the wicker chair and would call the station every week? Yeah, and he'd always say the same thing, see. He'd say, "I just come home and there's a man in the house. "And I don't know him and he's just staring at me out here, you know, "and I was inside and I got scared I run out on the porch "and I called you, and he's still here. "He's just sitting in there, rocking. "Lord, I think he's a crazy man." And I'd come over, you know, and I'd go in the house. Of course, the house was empty, right? And I'd wait a few minutes, and I'd say: "All right, now you get outta here. "And don't come back." And then I'd go to the back door. You know, I'd slam it real hard and make a lot of noise. Then I'd come out to the porch again, I'd say: "All right, it's okay, you can go back inside. "It's safe now. He's gone." And the old guy would come over and he'd thank me, you know, tears in his eyes. And then the next week, he'd call, and he'd do the same thing. And I'd come over, and I'd do the same thing. I wonder what ever happened to him. I don't mean the guy who was chasing him, I mean the guy on the front porch. There's a point to that whole story, I don't know what it is right now. Yeah, well, look, er... You stay frosty and I'll be talking to you. Bye. (GUN FIRES) Hey, Roy. What do you think about Kilvinsky? (INDISTINCT CHATTER) Johnson. You pick up the toys and I'll go find a black and white. Yeah, right. (CORK SQUEAKS) - WOMAN:Who is it? - Police officers. Just a minute. (LOCKS TURNING) Good evening, ma'am. I understand you've had some trouble? I'm Officer Fehler, this is Officer Johnson. You know, these wafer locks aren't worth anything. Now you tell me. What all's missing? Oh, my colour TV, wristwatch, Polaroid camera, all my clothes. Just about everything that was worth a damn. May I have your name, please? Lorrie Hunt. - Miss or Mrs? - Miss. Would you like some coffee? Okay, thanks. - Would you? - No, thanks. Well, I'm gonna fortify mine. I know you guys can't drink on duty. The print people will be here in a while, so try not to touch anything. I'll check on the radio, Roy. I'll see you below. Okay, kid. JOHNSON: Good night, miss. And we're very sorry about all this. WOMAN: It's all right. (DOOR SLAMS) Listen, if you don't mind, I'd like to forget the coffee, but I wouldn't mind a drink. - Be my guest. - Thanks. It doesn't hurt to bend the rules every now and again. Fehler? Does that name mean something to you? I know you. You do? I think I know about you. - How? - I'm a nurse. I was on the floor when they brought you in with a shotgun wound. You don't get too many of those. You surprised everybody. I did? How? By being alive. Are you all right? No. Thanks for the drink. We'll be in touch with you. Good night. Er, listen... If you like, I could stop by a little later after I'm off work, around one. What for? Well, just to see if you're okay. I'll be all right. I'd like to. I'll be all right by myself. Thanks. Okay. - Good night. - Good night. (FEHLER HUMMING) Johnson, you look absolutely beautiful. I got cigarette ash on my uniform. I just wanted to see if it was all off. Well, it's all gone. You look great. Look, I wanna take a run over to the call box at 81st and Hoover. I wanna use a call box. Let's go. Okay, Roy. What for? I wanna use a call box. (POLICE RADIO CHATTER) (KEYS RATTLE) (CORK SQUEAKS) Now a palm full of mints and a quick cigarette. And you hope nobody'll smell it on your breath. I don't want a boozer for a partner. I can't depend on him. Okay, kid. Whatever you say. (FEHLER HUMMING) (POLICE RADIO CHATTER) FEHLER: (SLURRING) Hey, look at that chick coming towards us, right over there. Follow her. Make a right right here. I'll be damned, it's Silverpants! Look at those silver pants. Isn't she beautiful? She is the heaviest hooker in town. Hey! Hey, Silverpants! Slow down, slow down. Stop the car. Wait here. I'm gonna give her a little zoom-o. (POLICE RADIO CHATTER) Hey, Silverpants, don't go away. I wanna talk to you. Hey, baby. Hey. What's the matter? Don't you remember who I am? Why don't you bust somebody for parking overtime? Because I'd much rather take a look at your driver's licence and your registration. - What for? - Come on, I'd like to. Come on. Come on, come on, come on. Let's go. Hey, you got no right! That's illegal search. Wait a minute. Just be polite. Watch it. Oh, Silverpants, I smell trouble. Oh, God. Oh, Silverpants, you're in real trouble now. This smells like good grass. You know I'll have to take you in. Look, I just got out of jail. Not again, please. I'm sorry, I gotta take you in. You're under arrest. - Gimme the keys. - All right, you son of a bitch! (TYRES SCREECH. CAR ACCELERATES) FEHLER: (SHOUTING) What are you doing?! What're you doing? You're crazy! You're gonna kill us. - Get off the car. - I can't! (CAR SKIDS) - (TYRES SCREECH) - (SIREN BLARES) (TYRES SCREECH) (HORN BLARING) - (BRAKES SQUEAL) - (TYRES SCREECH) Stop the car! Come on, I won't bust you. Stop! - What are you doing? Are you mad? - Get out! Die, you dirty bastard, die! Jump or I'll scrape you off. Oh, God, stop the car, will you? (HORN HONKING) Watch it. Watch it! Stop it! SILVERPANTS: (SCREAMING) I'll kill you, you fucking pig! (TYRES SCREECH) (CAR HORN BLARING) (CAR HORNS BLARE) Look out! Look out! (TYRES SCREECH) Look out. Look out! Look out. Oh, please! Urgh! (BREAKS SQUEAL) (TYRES SCREECH) (TYRES SCREECH) Who is it? Roy Fehler. (DOOR UNLOCKING) Oh, my God. What happened? I just took a little joy ride. I'll get a doctor. No, I don't want a doctor. I don't need any doctor. No doctors. Yes, you do. What happened? Couldn't hold on. Well, I couldn't let go. What? I tried to hold on, but I tried to let go. I don't know what you're talking about. It doesn't matter. Look... I'm sorry, I... I didn't wanna bother you, it's just... I know how you felt, but I had to see you. I had to come over here. You understand? Yes, I understand. You're gonna be all right. I'm gonna take care of you. All right. - H i. - H i. - Sorry I'm late. - That's okay. Well, how'd it go? Three week suspension. That's not so bad. No. Actually, I guess they gave me a break. I could have pulled a lot more time than that. The thing is, I don't really know if I wanna go back. I mean, you stop to think about it. What is there to recommend it? Nothing, unless it happens to be the thing you wanna do. At least you have three weeks to figure it out. Okay. You ever been married? No. How come? Maybe I don't believe in it. There was this guy, basketball player. - Oh, yeah? - Yeah. So, what happened? - Why I'm not with him? - Yeah. Well, I work nights, and I like myjob, and he wanted me to travel with the games. I guess I missed one game too many. Why are you smiling? I'm glad. I'm glad you missed the game. - Hello. - Hello, yourself. I'm in the kitchen, honey. Really? - Hello. - Hello. Something smells good. It's the dinner I'm burning. Looks like a feast. - It is. - Mmmm. I thought since it's your first day back, we could celebrate. Great. Well, tell me. How did it go? All right. Felt pretty good all day long. Did it go the way you expected? Well... It was different. I mean, it wasn't the same way as when I was working with Andy. You know, I used to think that being a policeman was the most important thing in my life. I guess Andy helped me feel that way. But, as far as I'm concerned, he was wrong. What? I thought you told me he was the best policeman you ever saw. Well, actually, I guess he was more of an artist than a policeman. I mean, he did everything his own way. If the law didn't cover a problem, Kilvinsky did. Kilvinsky's law. I guess he felt that his work was the most important thing in his life. Well, don't you feel that way about your work? No. Not anymore. Not since I met you. Come here. You know something? What? You are more important to me than anything I can do in the streets. You're more important to me than anything I can do. Period. I never knew that before, but I do now. I know you're more important to me than anything. (SHOUTING) (SHOUTING) - CAR RADIO: Major 415... - Let's go. We got some action. (SHOUTING) (SIRENS APPROACHING) (SIRENS WAILING) (GUN SHOT) (ENGINE REVVING) (SIRENS APPROACHING) (GUN SHOT) Guy's got the gun. Let's go get him. (SIREN WAILING) (SIREN WAILING) (BRAKES SCREECH) FEHLER: I'll take the driver. Hold it! (GUN SHOT) (SMASHING SOUNDS) (GUN SHOT) (RICOCHET) (RETURN FIRE) (FEHLER GASPING) (FEHLER WHIMPERS) (GUN SHOT) (GASPING) Drop it. Come on now, drop it. Drop it! (DOG BARKING IN DISTANCE) (DOG BARKING) All right, drop it or I'll take your head off. Somewhere under the Whittier Avenue bridge. (POLICE RADIO) FEHLER: Get in the car. I put a call in for assistance. Good. - What happened, Sergio? - I lost him. I'd give a thousand bucks to get another shot at the son of a bitch. Let's go, Serge. Serge. Hey, come on, Serge. - Hey, come on, man. - Sergio, come on. Forget it, man. Hey, Serge. Hey, Sergio, come on! Serge! (DURAN LAUGHS) You know something? I feel great. Let's book these dudes, and let's get us some breakfast. You know, sometimes I think I made a mistake by being a cop. - They made a mistake, anyway. - How's that? Well, I'm now getting $990 a month for bumping heads in gang fights and breaking cars. $990 a month for what I used to do for free. Wasn't it more fun when it was free? No, it's more fun now. - Hey, Gus, how's school? - Oh, yeah, you're going to school, huh? He's already passed his sergeant's exam. We're gonna be working for him before you know it, Sergio. You'll make a great sergeant, Gus. Thanks. Well, I'm getting married. Oh, yeah? I'm not gonna be any goddamn sergeant, but I'm getting married. Hey, congratulations. You know, I've been thinking of trying that again myself. Who is she? Just a girl. Damndest girl I ever met. It's too bad people don't sleep all the time. Why don't we tell her to call the cops? My old man kicked me in the ribs. I think he broke something. I gotta get back inside. What the hell are you getting paid for? We'll have a talk with him. You can't talk to him. He's crazy. I'm not going in. He said he'd kill me if I called the cops. - What apartment is he in? - Upstairs, in the rear of this building. (GUN SHOT) MAN: No, no. Don't, don't. Jesus. Not in the stomach. Not... DURAN: I'll get an ambulance! It can't happen now. Not now. I'm just starting to know. Not now. - It can't happen again. - Somebody get a blanket. It can't happen now. Take it easy. I don't want it to happen now. Don't talk. When I was just beginning to know. I know. I know, Lorrie. You what? I know, know... He's dead. (RECITING A PRAYER IN SPANISH) Please! Would somebody throw a blanket?! DURAN: (CONTINUING IN SPANISH) Amen.



Three rookie cops, Roy Fehler (Stacy Keach), Gus Plebesly (Scott Wilson), and Sergio Duran (Erik Estrada), report for duty with the Los Angeles police department. Roy is married with a daughter and intends to eventually become a law student. Gus is a father of three. Serge is a native of East L.A., who never expected to end up patrolling its streets.

Each is assigned a veteran partner. Roy's is the greatly experienced Andy Kilvinski (George C. Scott), who has been on the force for nearly a quarter-century and has his own unique style of law enforcement. For example, he will drive a group of hookers, who he has supplied with liquor, around the city streets for hours, in a paddy wagon, simply to keep them off the streets for a night.

Gus rides with Whitey Duncan (Clifton James). As they answer a burglary call, at a market, Gus opens fire on a suspicious figure in a dark alley, only to discover, to his horror, that it is the owner of the store.

Roy begins to frustrate his wife, Dorothy (Jane Alexander), by becoming obsessed with police work, neglecting his family, and dropping out of law school. He likes the life on the street. But during a convenience store holdup, Roy tells a couple in a parked car to move. Because he was careless, he does not realize that they are the get-away crew for the robbers. Without warning, the man shoots Roy with a sawed-off shotgun before escaping, leaving him gravely wounded on the sidewalk.

Gus and Serge discuss their fear of being shot. Serge temporarily partners with Andy, and together they handle a call involving a slum landlord. During this encounter, Andy becomes enraged and threatens the landlord for exploiting the "wetbacks" living in the apartment, in deplorable conditions. Roy gradually recovers and quickly encounters a shootout, but doesn't flinch.

As the rookies mark a year on the job, Andy reaches his 25th anniversary and mandatory retirement. He discusses the difficulties of police work with the younger men.

Roy is assigned to the vice squad, where the job is anything but glamorous—mostly arresting "fruits" for homosexual behavior in public parks. Dorothy has had enough, saying she does not care about him anymore. She leaves for San Francisco (where she meets a real estate agent) and takes their daughter, Becky, with her.

The young cops are delighted to get a visit, at the police station, from Andy, who has retired to Florida but misses police work. He regrets never having spent more time on his personal life. After speaking with Roy one last time, on the telephone, Andy puts his service revolver in his mouth and kills himself.

Depression gets the better of Roy, who begins to drink on the job. He answers a burglary call and the victim turns out to be Lorrie (Rosalind Cash), a nurse who helped him after he got shot. Later on patrol, a prostitute (Bea Thompkins) named "Silverpants" driving a Lincoln Continental, speeds off with Roy hanging from the car door. He barely avoids serious injury and Lorrie helps patch him up, but he draws a three-week suspension for being drunk on the job.

Roy begins seeing Lorrie socially and comes to his senses, appreciating the need for personal relationships, remembering what led Andy to end his life.

He goes on a shots fired call, which leads to a car chase, followed by a foot chase. Exhausted after booking the suspects, he is on the way to ending his shift, when he encounters a woman on the street who appeals for help with her threatening husband. Reluctantly, Roy, Gus, and Serge decide to investigate. As Roy takes the back stairs, the husband suddenly appears and, without warning, fires a single shot from a handgun. Roy dies in Gus's arms.


The film being shown at a Canadian cinema
The film being shown at a Canadian cinema


The movie was filmed on location in Los Angeles.


Roger Greenspun of The New York Times said, "Richard Fleischer's The New Centurions is an intermittently exciting, sometimes preachy, sometimes ironic, occasionally successful film about the lives of some fictional patrol-car cops on the Los Angeles police force. ... It is an awkwardly modern movie. Modern not so much in its attitudes toward cops (which are really pretty traditional) as in its attitudes towards fate. ... Fleischer's direction is technically adequate and emotionally absent. He does not so much direct actors as provide a void for them to fill — and among the principals, George C. Scott is almost shamefully good at filling voids and Stacy Keach is not."[2]

See also


  1. ^ "All-time Film Rental Champs", Variety, 7 January 1976 p 44
  2. ^ a b Greenspun, Roger (August 4, 1972). "'New Centurions': Police Patrol and Fate Make for Melodrama". The New York Times.

External links

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