REVIEW: RAW DEAL

CAST

Arnold Schwarzenegger (The Terminator)
Kathryn Harrold (The Slender)
Darren McGavin (Riverboat)
Sam Wanamaker (Wild Justice)
Paul Shenar (Scarface)
Steven Hill (The Firm)
Joe Regalbuto (Murphy Brown)
Robert Davi (Maniac Cop 2)
Sven-Ole Thorsen (Mallrats)
Ed Lauter (Cujo)
Dick Durock (Swamp Thing)
Leon Rippy (Stargate)

On December 16, 1985, in a remote wooded cabin, a mob informant is under protection by the FBI. They are ambushed by a hit squad who brutally slaughter the bodyguards and the witness. One of the agents killed is Blair Shannon, son of FBI Agent Harry Shannon (Darren McGavin), who vows revenge. After capturing a man posing as a motorcycle cop, small-town sheriff Mark Kaminsky (Arnold Schwarzenegger) goes home to his alcoholic wife Amy (Blanche Baker), who resents what their lives have been reduced to and in a drunken fit throws a cake at him. Kaminsky once worked for the FBI, but five years ago he brutally beat a suspect who “molested, murdered, and mutilated” a young girl. He was given the option to “resign or be prosecuted” by ambitious prosecutor Marvin Baxter (Joe Regalbuto), who is now Special Federal Prosecutor heading up a committee investigating the dealings of Luigi Patrovita (Sam Wanamaker), the strongest of the Chicago Outfit Dons.Shannon calls Kaminsky in with an unsanctioned and possibly illegal assignment: to infiltrate Patrovita’s organization and “tear it up”. Harry cannot do anything officially, and the FBI has a leak who has been getting agents killed, which is why Kaminsky must go in secret. Harry dangles the prospect of Kaminsky being reinstated with the FBI, leading to Kaminsky faking his own death in a chemical plant explosion and posing as convicted felon Joseph P. Brenner. He manages to get an audience with Patrovita’s right-hand man Paulo Rocca (Paul Shenar), and convinces them of his worth by harassing Martin Lamanski (Steven Hill), a rival mob boss who is trying to move in on his former boss Patrovita’s territory. While at Patrovita’s casino, hidden in a basement level of a high class hotel, he makes the acquaintance of Monique (Kathryn Harrold), who works for Rocca’s top lieutenant Max Keller (Robert Davi).Kaminsky continues to work his way into the good graces of the Patrovita family, including devising a plan that recovers $100 million of heroin and cash seized by the feds from one of Patrovita’s hideouts and simultaneously assisting in Lamanski’s assassination. Keller isn’t convinced that ‘Brenner’ is who he says and manages to find proof of the deception, showing Kaminsky’s photo to a police informant who previously arrested the real Brenner. The leak the FBI has been looking for is revealed to be Baxter, who is forced to stay close to Patrovita. Kaminsky accompanies Keller to a cemetery for a hit job, but discovers that the target is Harry Shannon, which causes him to blow his cover. Kaminsky and Shannon manage to kill Keller and another hit man, but Shannon is severely wounded in the exchange.Kaminsky escapes, assisted by Monique (who has grown fond of him). He tells her to go to the airport and wait for him. He then suits up, gathers an arsenal of firearms and raids one of Patrovita’s gravel pits, killing everyone (to the tune of “Satisfaction” by the Rolling Stones) and stealing a large amount of drug money. He then sets off for Patrovita’s casino, where he embarks on a killing spree, single-handedly wiping out all his soldiers, including the men directly responsible for the murder of Blair and his fellow FBI agents. Rocca and Patrovita retreat to a back room, but Rocca is cut down in a barrage of gunfire. Patrovita flees into an office pleading for his life, but Kaminsky mercilessly guns him down. On his way out, he encounters a whimpering Baxter and offers him a gun with the same line Baxter gave him five years earlier: “Resign, or be prosecuted. Any way you want it.” Kaminsky starts to walk off, and when Baxter attempts to shoot him, Kaminsky turns and shoots Baxter dead in self-defense. After driving to the airport, Kaminsky hands a duffel bag containing $250,000 in cash to Monique and gets her on a chartered plane, telling her she is free and can start a new life with no obligations to anyone.The epilogue shows Kaminsky visiting Shannon, who was crippled as a result of the gunshot wound to his back and has been refusing any therapy or rehabilitation. Kaminsky has been reinstated into the FBI, and his reunion with Amy has now led to her being pregnant. Kaminsky wants Shannon to be godfather to the child, but only if Shannon will attempt to walk. Shannon cannot walk easily at first and angrily asks Kaminsky to leave him be, but then Kaminsky tells Shannon he must show the same strength that made him a good father to Blair. Inspired by the love for his son and his gratitude to Kaminsky, Shannon makes a strong effort and eventually manages to walk a few feet on his own, embraced by a smiling Kaminsky.ttytytytyty.pngThis movie gives you everything you want to see in a true action movie from the Hero at his weakest to his strongest. Typically, action movies aren’t awarded Oscars because the character development is poor. Most of the characters die before you really get to know them in some of the films we see. In this film, Arnold accomplishes character development as well as action in the same movie. Although, some of the characters are stereotypical gangsters, his interaction with them helps solidify their presence in the movie. The movie does rank in the same category as Commando but if you love watching his movies, then this one should be a real treat!

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