D.J. Haza presents the next entry in his series of films to watch before you die…
Training Day, 2001.
Directed by Antoine Fuqua.
Starring Denzel Washington, Ethan Hawke, Eva Mendes, Scott Glenn, Tom Berenger, Cliff Curtis, Snoop Dogg and Dr. Dre.
Training Day follows LAPD cop Jake Hoyt (Hawke) over a 24 hour period in which he is assessed by decorated narcotics officer Alonzo Harris (Washington). The ambitious young cop Hoyte knows that making it into Alonzo’s team can advance his career quickly, but Alonzo’s methods are unorthodox and even immoral.
As Hoyte attempts to prove himself to Alonzo he soon realises that life on the mean streets isn’t the same as they teach it at the police academy. Alonzo doesn’t waste his time by arresting small time users or using protocol. He searches one house and leaves with chunks of money and in a hail of bullets as well as befriending a known local drug dealer. Alonzo also pressures Hoyte into smoking the marijuana they confiscate from some kids by putting a gun to his head and stating that refusing drugs on the street will get him killed.
As the day drags on and Hoyte questions the actions of Alonzo he finds himself stranded in the clutches of a local gang who plan to put an end to his police career once and for all. His moral standpoint and previous good deed that day sees him escape unharmed and he seeks to bring justice to Alonzo Harris.
Training Day is a fantastic story and so well told by the director, Anton Fuqua. He takes classic themes of good versus evil story and life morals to the next level by adding dirty cops, a bad attitude and the ghetto. It oozes with attitude and grit as well as being cool and classy, thanks in no small part to an award winning performance from Denzel Washington.
You must watch Training Day before you die because it is a stunning piece of cinema that earned Washington an Oscar for Best Actor. Washington is phenomenal as Alonzo Harris and his portrayal of the egotistical dirty cop with an attitude problem and his own way of policing was well worth the statue it earned him. Alonzo is the larger than life character that makes Training Day pop with attitude.