Narc

This compulsively watchable police thriller comes on like gangbusters with a cop (Jason Patric) chasing a perp. Simple stuff. But ballsy director Joe Carnahan — a real find — gives the scene the breathless urgency of something out of The French Connection.

Narc is a no-bull throwback to 1970s action films. It zips along with B-movie verve while adding the rich details and go-for-broke acting that heralds something special. Patric has his best role in years. And Ray Liotta — firing on all cylinders — is surefire Oscar bait as a cop you don't trust. Not if you're smart.

From The Archives Issue 293: June 14, 1979