Ken Tucker
January 24, 1992 AT 05:00 AM EST

Keeper of the City

type
TV Show
Current Status
In Season
performer
Peter Coyote, Anthony LaPaglia, Louis Gossett Jr.
distributor
Showtime Networks Inc.
genre
ActionAdventure, Crime

We gave it an D

A mentally disturbed man begins killing off mobsters in Chicago and sends notes bragging about his crimes to a local newspaper columnist. A tough cop takes it upon himself to find the killer.

As TV police-story plots go, this one is downright creaky, and only the cast of Keeper of the City might tempt you to tune in. Anthony LaPaglia, who has done excellent, eccentric work in recent feature films such as Betsy’s Wedding and One Good Cop, plays the killer; Peter Coyote (Echoes in the Darkness) is the columnist; and Louis Gossett Jr. (An Officer and a Gentleman) is the cop.

But their combined forces cannot overcome the slow, obvious direction of Bobby Roth (Baja Oklahoma) and the ludicrously overstated script by Gerald DiPego. ”When I talk to the people of Chicago,” says Coyote of his column at one point, ”I talk to them like I’m from their neighborhood.” This from a newspaperman who sits around the office in a cardigan, smoking a pipe, and speaking with imperious disdain to junior staffers on the paper. Filled with characters either hackneyed or unlikable, Keeper of the City gives you no one to root for. D

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