Street Knight

1993 Directed by Albert Magnoli. Starring Jeff Speakman.

REVIEWED By Louis Black, Fri., March 19, 1993

Actioners are basically revenge fantasies acted out in different narrative configurations. The genre is basically dominated by wooden leading men. Unfortunately, this has led scores of producers to star any handsome martial arts expert they can dig up, hoping to find the next Chuck Norris. The actors who work in these films (and it's an almost all-male clan: Schwarzenegger, Jean-Claude Van Damme, the dreaded Steven Seagal) usually figure out how to play a character with a limited emotional range and the ability to work through all the situations in the film. Speakman doesn't have a clue. I don't mean to rave on about Norris. It's just that if compared to Norris, Speakman can't act. Writer and director Magnoli helmed Purple Rain and for those who've always wondered if that talent was primitive art or just primitive, stylistically this argues for the former. There is a certain intelligence to Magnoli as a director if there is absolutely none to his achievements as a writer. Given no help from the script, with a vacuum as star, this silly tale about ex-cops murdering rival black and Hispanic gang members in order to start a major gang war so they can throw the city into chaos gets sucked into itself. If you give it even a casual look, there's nothing there.

A note to readers: Bold and uncensored, The Austin Chronicle has been Austin’s independent news source for over 40 years, expressing the community’s political and environmental concerns and supporting its active cultural scene. Now more than ever, we need your support to continue supplying Austin with independent, free press. If real news is important to you, please consider making a donation of $5, $10 or whatever you can afford, to help keep our journalism on stands.

Support the Chronicle  

READ MORE
More Albert Magnoli Films
Purple Rain
Do you know what it sounds like when a dove cries?

June 23, 2024

Sign o' the Times
...

June 23, 2024

More by Louis Black
From the Archives: Organizing Outside the System – Deborah Shaffer and <i>The Wobblies</i>
From the Archives: Organizing Outside the System – Deborah Shaffer and The Wobblies
Our 1981 interview with the filmmaker behind the classic doc

May 3, 2022

Page Two: Row My Boat Ashore
Page Two: Row My Boat Ashore
Louis Black bids farewell in his final "Page Two" column

Sept. 8, 2017

KEYWORDS FOR THIS FILM

Street Knight, Albert Magnoli, Jeff Speakman

MORE IN THE ARCHIVES
One click gets you all the newsletters listed below

Breaking news, arts coverage, and daily events

Keep up with happenings around town

Kevin Curtin's bimonthly cannabis musings

Austin's queerest news and events

Eric Goodman's Austin FC column, other soccer news

Information is power. Support the free press, so we can support Austin.   Support the Chronicle