Above the Law
Above the Law is an “autobiographical” account of Steven Seagal’s career as a Sensei / CIA Special Forces Operative / Chicago Police Detective / Pomade Addict. Above the Law is basically 3 rough drafts of movie ideas smushed together into one incoherent Seagal Punch People in the Face Fest.
Steven Seagal: Nico Toscani – Steven Seagal makes the bold choice to pretty much just play himself…something that he will then do for the rest of his career.
Pam Grier: Delores Jackson – Nico’s partner and the vinegar to Seagal’s honey.
Henry Silva: Kurt Zagon – Plastic surgery version of Col. Stuart from Die Hard 2.
Daniel Faraldo: Tony Salvano – 5′ tall crime boss. You can just put him in your pocket.
Sharon Stone: Sara Toscani – Nico’s wife. That is all. She’s just there to cry pretty much.
“You’ll never be the fucking man! Hold it man, don’t do me ugly!” – CIA Bartender
Above the Law Review
Above the Law begins with Steven Seagal narrating the upbringing of his character but it’s very clear he’s talking about his real life childhood. Seagal is apparently such a bad-ass that he was teaching Hokaido in the far east when he was a teenager. Hell, the first 3 minutes of this movie is just Seagal beating the shit out of Asian dudes.
Nico was recruited into the CIA by Nelson Fox when he was only 22. If that seems very abrupt and you think I skipped over something, I can assure you I didn’t. We don’t even see this scene, Nico just tells us in a voice over while he’s throat punching Japanese people. Nico is charged with the task of leading an elite squad through the jungles of Vietnam.
In the heart of Vietnam the tall, gangly, very conspicuous Nico is leading a team of four stealthily through the jungle. They come to a shack where the super secret CIA interrogation team choppers in to gather information from some Vietnamese soldiers. They do a super shitty job because the soldiers die from the extreme torture methods before giving any information whatsoever. The lead torturer is Kurt Zagon, who is also a part time zookeeper.
Here’s where things start to get a little bit silly. Nico doesn’t approve of the methods of Zagon and his men and when Zagon pulls a knife on him, Nico knocks him the fuck out. Nico and Fox are the only non Shadow Government type soldiers on this remote top secret mission site and Nico just fucked up the leader. Nico then tells Fox that he should just kill Zagon before Zagon kills him and he says this right in front of Zagon’s men. They all just stay on the porch while Nico takes off and Fox (who doesn’t even have his gun out) tells them not to move. To top it all off, as Nico is slowly sauntering off he yells to Fox that he’s quitting the CIA. A lot happens in this scene and it’s an unholy mess.
We are then instantly transported (10-20 years or so) to Seagal’s son’s baptism which is attended by cops and mob personnel. Nico is apparently a Chicago police officer now and he must not have any personal days left because he has to leave his son’s baptism early to go to work. He’s looking for his missing cousin so he goes into a bar and beats the shit out of everyone because they aren’t cooperating. Nico’s a police officer and no one has acted in a violent way towards him.
He finds his drugged out cousin in a flop house above the bar with some dude that Nico beats the shit out of. I think that brings the total to about 25 ass beatings so far. The junkie informs Nico about a major “shipment” that’s coming in that he heard from some coke lawyer. No other details provided nor wanted. Nico and Jaks go undercover to bust the shipment and are goddamn chameleons when it comes to their undercover work.
The Feds are also staking out this shipment and jump the gun causing a shootout to enuse. Nico is hit by Salvano’s car and lands on top of it causing Salvano and his henchman to panic. If you’re being chased by the cops and one of them is on top of your car, that particular cop should not pose any immediate threat to you. All they have to do is brake once and he’ll fly off the front. Instead they just try to drive into shit before coming to a leisurely stop. It’s a solid plan.