Robert Towne wrote and directed this crime drama that drips with 1980s style and atmosphere, but with the story is a pure 1930s Warner Brothers gangster film, with of two childhood friends, now on the opposite sides of the law and vying for the love of the same woman. Mel Gibson is an ex-con trying to go straight. Kurt Russell is is his childhood best friend, no a crusading cop. Both are vying for the attention of beautiful tough cookie Michelle Pfeiffer. What "Body Heat" was to film noir, this film is to Warner Brothers crime drama. Because of the throwback nature of the story, it's hard for me to objectively look at this film on it's own without geeking out over it's deep roots in classic film. However, Towne knows how to write some sharp dialogue and how to interestingly structure a story, so I believe that taken on it's own, this is a solid piece of filmmaking. There gorgeous photography by Conrad Hall and featuring production design by the great Richard Sylbert. You also get some terrific supporting performances by Raul Julia (who I really miss seeing in movies), JT Walsh and Ann Magnuson to name a few. It's a simply story, but told with an incredible amount of style by those behind the camera and with a considerable amount of charm by those in front of the camera.