Review: ‘Trespass’

Throw together The Treasure of the Sierra Madre and Rio Bravo, bring in the Ice crew, inject a noxious dose of racial hatred and stir in some sharp action direction and you've got Trespass.

Throw together The Treasure of the Sierra Madre and Rio Bravo, bring in the Ice crew, inject a noxious dose of racial hatred and stir in some sharp action direction and you’ve got Trespass.

Originally called Looters, pic underwent a title change, a delay and some alterations after the LA riots in spring ’92. Understandably so: the level of racial tension depicted here is way past the boiling point.

After a brief prologue, the film is entirely set in one location, a huge abandoned factory in East St. Louis, Ill. Learning that a huge stash of gold is supposedly buried somewhere in the bombed-out building, good ol’ boy firemen Bill Paxton and William Sadler drive to the eerily underpopulated area with the idea of recovering the loot.

Unfortunately for them, the two Arkansas crackers stumble on to a gangland murder and instantly become marked men. Pursued by some tough, well-armed blacks led by a resplendent Ice T, Paxton and Sadler manage to nab T’s brother (De’voreaux White). Holed up in one room, the white guys squabble about what to do with the gold.

Director Walter Hill’s handling of the action is fluid and kinetic, making the film a pleasure to watch for the expertness of its craft.

Ice T and Ice Cube strut their stuff in impressively forceful, if one-dimensional, fashion. Paxton and Sadler come off as decent but unremarkable. Technically, film is tops. Buildings in Atlanta and Memphis were employed for the single location.

Trespass

Production

Universal. Director Walter Hill; Producer Neil Canton; Screenplay Bob Gale, Robert Zemeckis; Camera Lloyd Ahern; Editor Freeman Davies; Music Ry Cooder; Art Director Jon Hutman

Crew

(Color) Available on VHS, DVD. Extract of a review from 1992. Running time: 101 MIN.

With

Bill Paxton Ice T William Sadler Ice Cube Art Evans De'voreaux White

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