“Cop Land” is the somewhat derogatory nickname given to Garrison, New Jersey, a town just across the Hudson River from Manhattan Island that several NYPD officers call home. A fender bender on the George Washington Bridge spirals out of control and results in the deaths of a group of African American teens at the hands of Officer Murray ‘Superboy’ Babitch (Michael Rapaport), nephew of department head Lt. Ray Donlan (Harvey Keitel), prompting an elaborate cover-up that gets the attention of an Internal Affairs investigator (Robert De Niro). . . and, rather surprisingly, that of Garrison’s sheriff, the overweight, somewhat slow-witted Freddy Haflin (Sylvester Stallone), whose partial deafness kept him from joining the NYPD himself. The ensuing investigation uncovers a hornet’s nest of corruption within the NYPD and reveals Garrison to be what it actually is – the personal kingdom of a bunch of cops with their fingers in a lot of illegal pots; soon, Freddy becomes something of a one-man army against the fellow policemen he used to consider his brothers, taking the first significant steps toward bringing justice to perhaps the most crooked town on the East Coast. “Cop Land” received a lot of attention for Stallone being cast against type (he gained 40 pounds for the role via a steady diet of pancakes), and he’s backed up by one of the most impressive supporting casts of the ’90s that also includes Ray Liotta, Cathy Moriarty, Annabella Sciorra, Robert Patrick, Frank Vincent, Peter Berg, Edie Falco and Paul Calderon – all working for scale, as the production budget was a mere $10 million. The film’s somewhat fantastical story plays like a modern day fable, emphasized all the more by the fact that Garrison, NJ couldn’t ever be the home to a bunch of New York cops due to a statute requiring NYPD officers to reside within New York State. – IFC Staff