Fools say in their hearts, “There is no God.”
They are corrupt, they do abominable deeds;
there is no one who does good.
The Lord looks down from heaven on humankind
to see if there are any who are wise,
who seek after God.
Do not be deceived; God is not mocked, for you reap whatever you sow.
Director Antoine Fuqua and screenwriter Michael C. Martin’s story of three Brooklyn cops is no paean to our men in blue, though it displays well the intense stress that comes with the job of being on the front lines of enforcing the law. There are three stories, related only in that all three cops work out of the same station.
Eddie (Richard Gere) is a 22-year veteran going through the motions because he wants nothing to spoil his impending retirement. Sal (Ethan Hawke) is a devout Catholic desperately in need of money so that he can move his wife and five children (more on the way from their small cramped house to more spacious quarters). He has been slipping into his own pocket some of the cash that his team seizes when they bust drug dealers. Tango (Don Cheadle), whose story is developed in more detail, is an under cover agent hoping to make lieutenant grade so that he can work behind a desk and return to a normal life. His handler assures him that the promotion will be soon, right after he brings down drug lord Caz (Wesley Snipes). The problem is that Tango is conflicted because the drug lord saved his life. His promotion means betraying a friendship.
There is a lot of action, much of it including violent shootings of bad and good guys, some of which results in loss of soul as well as life. The film was not a big hit, though it did enough business to recover its cost, so those who enjoy cop shows will have to seek it out on cable or DVD. It is not among the best of its genre, but it is an engrossing tale of what happens to men whose jobs result in being caught up in “the entangling folds of sin.”
1. With which, if any, of the three cops do you identify?
2. Which of them seems under the greatest of temptation? How might you act were you faced with their circumstances?
3.Which of the three is the most religious? And yet does his religion connect with his daily life? How do you think he handles this disconnect?
4. How do the stories unfold along the line of Galatians 6:7 (and also Romans 7:23)?