Chicago has gained a reputation all over for being one of the toughest cities in the nation. At times it’s had a bad rap for being too violent or too confrontational at times, but in truth it’s a pretty great city. It’s law enforcement officers are by trade some of the toughest people around, but in film they tend to vary from movie to movie. Some are inordinately tough, others are kind of loose and a bit slovenly, and others are just flat out funny. No matter how Chicago detectives seem on film though there are a lot of times in which they seem at least halfway convincing regardless of the fact that a lot what they do wouldn’t fly in the real world.
Here are five of the best uses of Chicago detectives in movies.
5. Art Ridzik – Red Heat
It can’t be easy being paired up with a big, humorless Russian investigator that’s constantly trying to bend rules that he knows little to nothing about. But Ridzik does his best and actually offers up a comedic side to the movie to balance out Danko’s otherwise serious and overbearing demeanor. But when he makes a crack about the most powerful handgun in the world the culture clash becomes a little more real. Who in the world doesn’t know about Dirty Harry at this point?
4. Detective Spooner – I, Robot
Spooner is old school in a futuristic way. He clings to the nostalgic feel of the past while trying to use the tools of the future to protect against an uncertain present. Follow all that? He mistrusts any machine that is programmed to think and therefore make its own decisions based upon what’s factual and logical. All of this comes because of a decision made by a robot to save him and not a young girl during a fatal car accident. Some might say he’s not gracious enough, but watching a kid die because of someone else’s decision could cause serious ramifications.
3. Jim Malone – The Untouchables
Malone isn’t technically a detective but he’s not longer just a beat cop either in this film. His style is to beat down the enemy and get them to talk no matter how he has to do it. Sticking a gun in a corpses mouth seems a little far out there, but it had the desired result. Some people might not approve of this method, but then again, they’re not from Chicago.
2. Burton Mercer – The Blues Brothers
He’s probably the most ridiculous detective on this list, but at least he’s funny. John Candy was, in his time, a very funny man and has been missed since he’s passing. He played this role with such ease that it’s a wonder he wasn’t a more prominent character. But then there were so many that fitting them all in would have made for a four-hour movie. As long as you could settle in with an orange whip it should have been okay.
1. Mike Norris – Child’s Play
So the killer’s dead, right? Nope, according to the film gods you can transfer your soul to anything if you know the right words and incantations. So Mike gets a nasty little surprise, no pun intended (or was it?), when Chucky pops up and decides to repay the favor. If he didn’t believe Andy and his mother before, he definitely did after this.
Chicago detectives in movies haven’t been the most prominent role throughout the decades, but those that have been shown have been entertaining at least.
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