Rush 1991 Movie Scene Jason Patric as Jim Raynor and Jennifer Jason Leigh as Kristen holding out in their apartment

Rush [1991]

If you’ve seen one movie about undercover cops, you’ve seen them all, am I right? Well, apparently not because Rush offers a different perspective on the undercover cop genre and a lot more. This is also a movie about drugs, corruption, and plain old life itself. And it’s based on real fucking events! The story is taking place during the mid-seventies and as Nixon’s “war on drugs” was ramping up, it swept under its wing two cops, Jim and Kristen. I mean, the story is relatively predictable but as the old saying goes it’s not what you said, it’s how you said it.

Rush is an emotional, almost melancholic slow-burning thriller bordering on drama. It features an excellent cast led by Jason Patrick and Jennifer Jason Leigh. Patrick went so far as to really shoot up, only the stuff was either saline or vitamins. Still, I respect the commitment. And what to say about the supporting cast? We’ve got immortal Sam Elliot, lovable Max Perlich, and motherfucking Gregg Allman of the Allman Brothers Band, what more to want?

Music is an integral part of the movie Rush and not just because of Gregg who nailed his role as the biker drug lord. Several Eric Clapton’s songs along with a fitting collection of other artists from the seventies will make you feel like you’re right there, in that seedy biker bar. And this is coming from someone who doesn’t listen to this genre of music. However, respect where respect is due. And do check out Allman Brothers Band’s Whipping Post to see and hear Gregg in action. Fucking two drum sets, get the fuck out of here!

Jim Raynor has been working as an undercover cop for some time now. To bag his next target, bar owner and suspected drug dealer Will Gaines, he will need a partner. Jim chooses young Kristen, straight out of the academy, and immediately introduces her to the seedy underbelly of the city. They’ve only got each other while on this mission so they need to stick together. So, the hunt begins…

The first part of Rush was so good I wanted it to just go on and on. The dialogues between our junky duo and their perspective suppliers felt authentic as fuck. The atmosphere would start to feel really tense and uncomfortable, just like it should. However, in the second part, the story slows down and focuses more on the characters. Now, you should know that this is not a faithful adaptation of what really happened in this case. I suggest you first watch the movie and then check out this Wiki article about the case. 

The world-building in this movie is superb along with character development. You wish to know more about everybody, especially the various drug dealers we’ll be meeting. For example, the scene featuring William Sadler as the tattooed and menacing chemist Monroe is only a couple of minutes long but it fucking stays with you. The movie really captured that seventies vibe. Finally, Rush is a bit quirky buddy undercover cop movie and this is the reason why it didn’t receive as much attention as it should. Luckily, we’re here to right that wrong.

Director: Lili Fini Zanuck

Writers: Kim Wozencraft, Peter Dexter

Cast: Jason Patric, Jennifer Jason Leigh, Sam Elliott, Max Perlich, Gregg Allman, Tony Frank

Fun Facts: One of the main characters in the video game StarCraft, Jim Raynor got his name from this movie.

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IMDb Link: https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0102820/