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Training Day


Denzel Washington is one of our best American actors and he's rarely been better than he is in 2001's TRAINING DAY.

Ethan Hawke is Jake Hoyt, on his first day on the job as a narcotics offer, reporting to the legendary Alonzo Harris (Washington) to start his day.

From the first moments they meet, Alonzo proves to be unpredictable, explosive and unorthodox.

The movie immerses us in that first day as a roller coaster of action, loyalty and one test after another for young Jake.

Director Antoine Fuqua (The Equalizer, The Magnificent Seven) drops us into the underbelly of drug controlled areas of Los Angeles that Alonzo moves through in a path of respect & fear, clearly knowing many of the players on both sides of the law on a level Jake can barely comprehend.

As the day goes on, we, along with Jake, watch the line between right and wrong not just be crossed, but obliterated by Alonzo's tactics.

Washington is powerful in his Oscar Winning role, some of his line deliveries have become all-time classics.

Scott Glenn (Backdraft) is very good as a retired cop getting ready to head to Florida and Eva Mendes (Hitch) is strong as Alonzo's mistress living deep within gang territory.

There are harrowing scenes of innocent people and children caught in the crossfire between Alonzo and his enemies.

Hawke is great, showing signs of the terrific actor he'd become in the past two decades.

As Alonzo's motto of "To protect the sheep you gotta catch the wolf, and it takes a wolf to catch a wolf" unfolds, the tension builds into a powerful finale.

Washington is a beast and as always, he disappears into the role of Alonzo. His long speech in the finale was mostly improvised, even the King Kong line that's become the film's signature one liner.

Suspenseful and a hell of a ride, TRAINING DAY gets an A.

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