Detective Knight: Independence review by Bobby Blakey
Despite his announcement retirement due to health issues Bruce Willis seems to still have projects making their way into the world. The latest is the final installment of his Detective Knight trilogy aptly titled Detective Knight: Independence. The film co-stars Jack Kilmer, Jimmy Jean-Louis, Willow Shields, Dina Meyer, Timothy V. Murphy and Lochlyn Munro reprising his role as Knight’s partner Fitzgerald. Could it offer up something more than the previous entries or will it fail to offer any independence?
Detective Knight: Independence follows Knight’s last-minute assignment to the Independence Day shift that turns into a race to stop an unbalanced ambulance EMT from imperiling the city’s festivities. The misguided vigilante, playing cop with a stolen gun and uniform, has a bank vault full of reasons to put on his own fireworks show...one that will strike dangerously close to Knight’s home.
Sadly the first two films weren’t all that strong so heading into this final outing I kept my expectations low. Much like the previous entries Willis is here front and center, but far from leading the film. Each of these films had another character that carried the load of the bigger story with Willis in and out on the hunt for them. This film plays up more as a prequel than a direct sequel as the last film, but not sure that is actually the case.
I was hoping for the final outing it might go out with a bang and really let Willis shine as much as he could, but it is more of the same. I will say the film is probably the best of the entire series if that is saying anything. It’s bringing another robbery to the forefront, but the addition of the EMT involvement made it a more interesting story and thankfully ditched more of the cult stuff from the previous film.
While a better story it still plays up like a straight to home video lower budget release and it shows. There are elements that manage to feel bigger, but it just never has that big moment to get it out of the average at best. That being said the few action sequences we get are probably the best of the series with the opening being like a first person shooting game and the finale offering up a decent car chase and shoot out.
I still love Willis and knowing what he is going through I sympathize and will support whatever he does until he officially has no more projects coming due to his announced retirement. This film didn’t have the punch it needed to end the series on a high note, but did still manage to step things up on some level.
Decide for yourself and check out Detective Knight: Independence in theaters, On Demand and Digital now and be sure to check out the first two films Rogue and Redemption available now on Blu-ray and DVD from Lionsgate.