Film Review: Copshop – 5.5/10

You’re never more than a day ahead of the devil…’

Joe Carnahan is a director with a decent track record for making watchable action movies. Smokin’ Aces, The A-Team and The Grey are all perfectly competent movies but they aren’t going to win any awards. You can now add Copshop to Carnahan’s list of films that are nearly but not quite great…

On the run from at least one lethal assassin, con artist Teddy Muretto (Frank Grillo) dubiously decides that his best course of action is to get himself arrested and wait for the storm to pass safely tucked away in a small town prison cell. And so, he punches determined cop Valerie Young (Alexis Louder) in the face and happily takes his medicine. Meanwhile, Bob Viddick (Gerard Butler) and Anthony Lamb (Toby Huss), a pair of deadly assassins, are trying to take Muretto out separately.

Copshop starts off really well with some quick-fire dialogue, plenty of gun fights, fist fights, and other such cool stuff kicking off. The film peaks with the arrival of Toby Huss’ maniacal assassin and then with the Assault on Precinct 13-style siege sequences. Unfortunately, Carnahan and his co-writers Kurt McLeod and Mark Williams don’t really know where to go from there so inevitably the third act descends into a by-the-numbers gun fest in which it never really matters who lives or dies. We don’t really have anybody to root for here, despite the fact that Butler and Louder both do a decent job with the limited script they are given.

Copshop is perfect for action movie fans looking to pass a couple of hours but it has to be said that there isn’t much substance here.