Corrupt AKA Copkiller

Written by Matteo Sedazzari
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harvey keitel  john lydon corrupt copkiller matteo sedazzari zani 1

Corrupt which was made in 1981, yet not released until 1984, stars two heavyweights from the world of film and music, Harvey Keitel and John Lydon AKA Johnny Rotten, in a film about corruption, guilt and murder. Harvey Keitel plays Lt. Fred O'Connor, a New York policeman who doesn't say no to a backhander, and from his ill gotten gains he is able to purchase an uptown apartment with colleague Bob Carvo (Leonard Mann).

This becomes their fortress of solace away from their NYC police precinct, lovers, friends and the outside world in general. Yet meanwhile in the streets of New York, a cop killer is on the loose, and no policeman in the big Apple feels safe.

/harvey keitel  john lydon corrupt copkiller matteo sedazzari zani 3.jAfter strange sightings in a yellow cab of a skinny pale man, and the concierge informing O'Connor of an unknown visitor, a stranger turns up at his apartment, and announces himself as Leo Smith (an angelic looking John Lydon minus the spiked hair), and that he is the cop killer the city has been looking for. However O'Connor is faced with a dilemma, he can't arrest him and hand him over to the police, as they will know about the apartment and how he obtained it, so he kidnaps Smith whilst he works out what to do.

The apartment soon becomes the focal point of the film, symbolic of corruption, with Smith bound and gagged in the bathroom, as O'Connor orchestrates his own methods with interrogation, which certainly doesn't follow the Geneva Convention. Smith has information on O'Connor in the form of a tape diary, and the policeman needs to find his journal before he can dispose of him. Yet a conflict emerges between Carvo and O'Connor. Carvo is feeling guilty about the apartment and wants out, and when he sees Smith treated in an inhuman way, Carvo and O'Connor fight, resulting in Carvo's death.

O'Conner takes the corpse and Smith to Central Park, and informs Smith that Carvo is unconscious and he must kill him, and he will be set free. Smith hesitates and pleads with O'Connor that he is not the killer, but with a gun to his head, he slits Carvo's throat and on doing so disappears into the night. Yet later on Smith returns to O'Conner's apartment and soon the captured becomes the capturer.

harvey keitel  john lydon corrupt copkiller matteo sedazzari zani
Lydon's career in acting never took off after this, and it would be fair to say, he isn't a natural actor, yet he does bring his unique maverick style to the film. In addition The Corrupt may not be the powerhouse of other Keitel's films, yet as documented it serves as a blueprint for the successful Bad Lieutenant, but to see the star of Mean Streets and ex lead singer of The Sex Pistols share the screen together, makes watching this film highly worthwhile .

© Words – Matteo Sedazzari/ ZANI Media

Read 6108 times Last modified on Friday, 08 May 2015 16:30
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Matteo Sedazzari

Matteo Sedazzari

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