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Deep Cover

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Product Details

  • Actors: Laurence Fishburne, Jeff Goldblum, Lira Angel, René Assa, Bruce Paul Barbour
  • Directors: Bill Duke
  • Writers: Henry Bean, Michael Tolkin
  • Producers: David Streit, Deborah Moore, Henry Bean, Michael De Luca, Pierre David
  • Format: Anamorphic, Closed-captioned, Color, Dolby, Full Screen, Widescreen, NTSC
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 2.0 Surround), English (Dolby Digital 5.1)
  • Subtitles: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: R (Restricted)
  • Studio: New Line Home Video
  • DVD Release Date: September 14, 1999
  • Run Time: 107 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (85 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: 6305505802
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #37,467 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Deep Cover" on IMDb

Special Features


Editorial Reviews


Customer Reviews

The characters are mostly well fleshed out.
Like a lot of people, I like good Cops and Gangster movies.
Mark J. Fowler
Jeff Goldblum and Laurence Fishburne...plenty to love.
Harry Bosch's wife

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

21 of 22 people found the following review helpful By MilesAndTrane on December 16, 1999
Format: DVD
Unlike many other films that have taken the undercover cop story and pursued it in a typical fashion, "Deep Cover" takes a tense, intimate approach. Director Bill Duke creates a quiet masterpiece casting Laurence Fishburne as a by-the-book cop assigned to infiltrate a major cocaine empire in Los Angeles. His connection inside is Jeff Goldblum (in probably his best performance ever), a supposed clean-shaven Jewish lawyer who secretly longs for the thrill of a gangster's life while trying to maintain a family at home. Duke does not glorify these drug dealers as Scarface-type millionaires who revel in money & mansions but rather paints them as quiet, suspicious businessmen who hold no true alliances to anyone while nesting in pool halls & boxing gyms. There is never a moment where any of these characters are seeking fame & fortune. Instead, they are looking for recognition of their power over both their friends & foes.
Fishburne soon finds himself sucked into the dealer's life against his will, doing whatever he can to infiltrate the organization despite how far "deep" he's involved in it (as opposed to the cliche that the cop decides he likes being a drug dealer). Meanwhile, Jeff Goldblum also enters the chaos that's unraveling, learning to embrace the thug within him that was waiting to emerge. The film has the unmistakable look & sound of the early 90's (a good time in film & music if you ask me), but it has aged well due to sharp cinematography and a fine soundtrack. The film has a slightly distracting sub-plot involving Fishburne and a Christian cop played by Clarence Williams III, but Williams pulls it off with such conviction that you don't mind.
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13 of 15 people found the following review helpful By Nathan on July 1, 2001
Format: DVD
I, like so many other people who grew up in the time I did, was first attracted to this film solely through the title song by Dr. Dre on the soundtrack to the film. It was ridiculous how much I heard that song get played all over the radio and the hype it surrounded the movie with during that spring of 1992. In fact, it, in many ways, has outlasted the film itself in terms of pop culture's memory. And that is actually a shame.

This a superior thriller, taking the undercover cop story and crafting a tension-drenched and surprisingly subtle movie. And though it begins to lose its bottom by the end and becomes a little contrived, for the first three quarters of the movie it is expertise and a whole lot more unpredictable than most films of its genre. Veteran actor Laurence Fishburne stars, in, surprisingly, his first lead role, as an L.A. cop who is assigned to go undercover and infiltrate a major cocaine empire in Los Angeles. It is a job he reluctantly takes; as a child he witnessed his junkie father killed while pulling a stickup on Christmas Eve. The flashback of this is shown as the opening scene and is one of the most disturbing in the film, as the young child, who had just listened to his father ask him what he wanted for Christmas, watches the whole bloody incident in horror and pain from the parked car. This plays heavily on his conscience and his psychic well-being as the film goes on. He goes everywhere from the seedy streets of the inner-cities and ghettos as a cocaine dealer and manages to get all the way to the highest ranks of the organization. He does this by working his way into the circle of a mid-level drug distributor.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Borjan Komarica on May 4, 2002
Format: DVD
This is the only movie that I rented on reccomandation from video-store clerk that proved worth watching.
Excellent cast, believable characters and dialogue, story with suspense and twists, well directed action and to top it all of -a moral story.
Plot in a sentence: honest black cop goes undercover and finds himself too deep...
This is no easy viewing, especially when you watch it by yourself for the first time, but it's quite rewarding in the end.
Favourite line: "All this time I thought I was a cop pretending to be a drugdealer. I am nothing but a drugdealer pretending to be a cop."
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Dr S J Davies on September 5, 2001
Format: VHS Tape
This is a truly excellent movie. Everything is good - the script, the plot, the cinematography, but above all the acting. How Larry Fishburne did not get an Oscar for his performance is beyond me. He has a really powerful screen prescence, his narration is pitched perfectly, but most impressive is the way his character's personality changes and develops throughout the film, something that takes really good acting and control to achieve. All of the other actors do well also, but none of them are as good as Fishburne. The action is gripping but controlled but it is the powerful plot which holds the entire film together. The film starts as a fairly standard "cops movie" but you realise about half way through that it's nothing of the sort. Forget about "Traffic" this is one of the most powerful attacks on the (so-called) "War on Drugs" that you are ever likely to see. The movie also raises all sorts of deep questions, about loyalty, principles, and how to maintain your integrity in a deeply corrupt system. Go and see it now!
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