5 Questions: Striking Distance
In this edition of 5 Questions, I have some burning questions regarding a movie that many believe is both the best and the worst police river rescue squad movie of all-time, Striking Distance.
Striking Distance stars Bruce Willis as Detective Tom Hardy. Hardy is investigating the Polish Hill murders, murders he believes a fellow cop was responsible for. Unfortunately for Hardy, his superiors believe they have their man and the case is closed amid a sea of controversy. After he speaks out against the verdict, Hardy is removed from homicide and reassigned to river rescue. As a member of the Pittsburgh Police River Rescue Squad, Hardy unofficially reopens the investigation, with some help from his new partner Jo Christman (Sarah Jessica Parker), after dead bodies start showing up in the river, dead bodies of women Hardy knew personally and women murdered just like those in the Polish Hill murders from years earlier.
Hardy wants some answers, and so do I…
1. Who drives out to some random bridge to dump a rug into the river?
This is the most baffling question in all of Striking Distance. Does this litter bug not have curb side pickup? And even if their local garbage man doesn’t pick up bulk items like an old rug, there was nowhere else on the way to this random bridge in a deserted part of town in the middle of the night that this litter bug could have dumped the rug? A random dumpster? The side of the road? In the woods? On somebody else’s tree lawn? Your desire to pollute a river must be really strong to put that kind of effort in to dumping an unwanted rug.
2. Where was Striking Distance filmed?
Oh that’s right… Pittsburgh. The producers really wanted to make sure the audience did not forget at any time while watching Striking Distance that the movie took place in Pittsburgh. And even in the event that someone did let that fact slip their mind, they threw in some not so subtle reminders. A Pittsburgh Penguins poster on the wall. Some Rolling Rock beer in the fridge and name dropping the Pittsburgh Pirates. I was surprised they didn’t have some of the extras in the court room scene waving some Terrible Towels in the air.
3. Why was Gordon from Sesame Street playing one of the cops?
I understand that Roscoe Orman is an actor playing the role of Gordon on Sesame Street and as an actor he can play different characters in different projects, but it still seemed like an odd casting choice to me. Dennis Farina, was not only born to play a cop, he actually was one. But Roscoe Orman!?!? He’s Gordon on Sesame Street. He is the dude interacting with the likes of Elmo and Big Bird, not the dude arresting perps and investigating homicides.
Another thing that struck me as odd is that I didn’t question Gordon playing a cop in my 5 Questions: F/X.
4. If you are woman, who would you rather know Tom Hardy or Paul Kersey?
This may be like asking somebody if they’d rather be deaf or blind. But in this case it is more like, would you rather be dead or dead.
Paul Kersey, the protagonist of the Death Wish series of movies, had four love interests, a daughter and the daughter of one of his love interests die over the course of the five films.
Tom Hardy, has women he dated, women he went to prom with, even a random female co-worker die in the course of one movie! I didn’t think anyone could have worse luck with women than Paul Kersey until I saw the curse of knowing Tom Hardy in Striking Distance.
5. After her investigation of Detective Tom Hardy was over, was Jo Christman forever known as the woman who put the “affair” in Internal Affairs?
Jo Christman, a cop with the Internal Affairs division (some may simply call it IA, others the “rat squad”), is assigned to go undercover as Tom Hardy’s new partner. She does more than go undercover, she gets under the covers with Hardy. GET IT?
Should this be looked at as Jo going above and beyond? Or should it be looked at as unprofessional behavior?