Detective Knight: Independence
Cast: Bruce Willis, Lochlyn Munro, Jack Kilmer, Willow Shields, Jimmy Jean-Louis, Jimmy Jean-Louis
Director: Edward Drake
Critic’s Rating: 3 stars out of 5
Genre: Crime, thriller
Duration: 1 hr, 31 mins
Release Details: Select theaters and major VOD platforms on January 20, 2023.
DVD and Blu-ray on February 28, 2023.
A legendary detective must hunt down a disturbed young man who is dressing up as a cop and robbing banks in the name of funding his dream of creating his own police force
Nothing succeeds like success, they say – a phrase that Hollywood lives by and often churns out movies after movies, sometimes as sequels and prequels while at times as part of a full blown universe spawned from characters made popular through intense marketing and PR gimmicks. In this race to cash in on a popular character or a story, makers often lose sight of what the audience really want. However, the same cannot be said for this one.
Writer-director Edward Drake gives us a satisfying finale to the Knight trilogy but this time with a highly motivated antagonist. He is Dezi (Jack Kilmer), who devises his own brand of vigilante justice to bring about a change in the society. It’s a complex character that is not easy to root for neither it is easy to be hated, because it is not all dark or gray. Kilmer does justice to this young man’s dilemma and actions driven by what he sees around himself.
Ed takes a slow approach to his thriller which is always a tricky decision. It robs the film of its pace that is so important to bring in the element adventure and urgency. This makes the film’s screenplay feel verbose and lethargic in places. The best moments are clearly when the thrill reaches its peak during the bank robbery scenes. It’s twisted and bloody. As the film progresses, there are dull moments too when nothing much happens until it all ends in a high tension yet predictable climax.
Bruce Willis again has less screentime, which isn’t cool although he makes his limited time and scope count. The makers says they have shot the film in 7 or 8 days but the final product is good enough and does make it look like any decent size, nominal budgeted actioner. The action is served in measured doses.
Clearly, ‘Detective Knight’ doesn’t make it to the top of the list of larger-than-life action adventure thrillers. Rather, Ed takes it slow and manages to give his veteran star Bruce Willis and his famed trilogy a befitting farewell.