Above the Law (1988)


“This maniac should be wearing a number, not a badge. ” – Salvano

Number of Times Seen – A few times (Cable in the 80’s and 90’s and 25 Oct 2020)

Brief Synopsis – A police officer who formally worked for the CIA during the Vietnam War must do all he can to try and stop rogue CIA agents from assassinating a Senator against their policies.

My Take on it – As a child of the 80’s and early 90’s, I’ve seen lots of Steven Seagal films numerous times.

This film was his theatrical debut and he is able to show that he can both act and also be a great action hero largely due to his martial arts abilities that work well on screen.

The story of this film comes across a bit too bland and things are too predictable for their own good.

Andrew Davis is a great director and his penchant for using Chicago as a backdrop in his films allows him to constantly employ Chicago based actors in his movies and it’s fun seeing familiar faces pop up here that were also in Code of Silence (1985), The Package (1989) and in The Fugitive (1993).

They choreograph the action scenes really well and that helps make things more entertaining to watch.

The conspiracy theory aspects of the plot are structured well but it’s unfortunate that the villains aren’t developed better or in a way that would make them seem more treacherous in all that they do here.

Fun seeing Sharon Stone in a small role as Seagal’s wife a few years before everyone knew who she was.

Bottom Line – Seagal’s debut film which shows he can both act and be a great action hero. The story is a bit bland here and things come across too predictably. Davis does a wonderful job directing this film and I loved seeing lots of Chicago actors in this film especially those that he use din other parts in Code of Silence (1985), The Package (1989) and in The Fugitive (1993).  The action scenes are choreographed really well and help keep things more enjoyable. The film does a nice job creating a conspiracy theory that is compelling to watch unfold even if the villains aren’t intriguing enough. Stone plays a small part as Seagal’s wife which is fun to see since this was just a few years before she became a household name.

MovieRob’s Favorite Trivia – It has been reported that Steven Seagal was asked to make the film by his former aikido pupil, agent Michael Ovitz, who believed that he could make anyone a movie star. (From IMDB)

Rating – BAFTA Worthy (6/10)

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2 thoughts on “Above the Law (1988)

  1. Pingback: Code of Silence (1985) | MovieRob

  2. Pingback: Movies Reviewed Index A-Z | MovieRob

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