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Film / Internal Affairs

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Internal Affairs is a 1990 crime thriller film starring Richard Gere and Andy García.

Dennis Peck is a crooked cop who uses his fellow officers to get the things he wants. IAD (Internal Affairs Division) detective Raymond Avila becomes obsessed with exposing Peck's corruption.


  • Amicable Exes: Peck and his ex-wife have a good relationship.
  • Alas, Poor Villain: While Van Stretch isn’t the most sympathetic guy in the world, it’s still hard not to feel a little sorry for him because he wanted to come clean and redeem himself, only for Dennis to brutally have him murdered.
  • Asshole Victim: Dennis at the end. He won’t be missed by many people other than his wife and kids.
  • Bitch in Sheep's Clothing: Dennis does a great job of hiding his sadistic and manipulating personality behind a very charismatic and jovial façade.
  • Blatant Lies: It's very obvious that Penny is very unhappy in her marriage with Van due to his coke addiction and physical abuse, but when she is questioned by Raymond and Amy about how things are going with Van? She says everything is going fine. Both Detectives know that’s not the case, especially with the black eye on her face.
    • Also Van when he says he doesn’t have a drug problem when it’s clearly obvious that it looks like he’s been snorting blow.
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  • Book Ends: The movie begins and ends in a couple's apartment.
  • Clingy Jealous Girl: Kathy becomes jealous of Raymond's relationship with Amy, bitterly calling her Raymond's "girlfriend".
  • Crazy Jealous Guy: Peck deliberately involves this in Raymond by convincing Raymond that his wife is having an affair with him.
  • Dirty Cop: Dennis Peck is this trope to the extreme. He plants evidence, plots to kill others for a price, and killed Van Stretch to make sure the officer wouldn't confess about his crimes.
    • Van himself has had numerous complaints of excessive force against him and not to mention his heavy cocaine addiction, which is why Raymond and Wallace are able to corner him into giving up Dennis.
  • Easily Forgiven: Kathy forgives Raymond for his violent outburst towards her after slapping him a few times and having passionate sex.
  • Even Evil Has Loved Ones: A slimy Dirty Cop he may be, but Peck does genuinely love his family.
  • Even Evil Has Standards: Also in the scene where Van is beating on Penny in front of their son Sean, Dennis shows up to break up, takes Van outside and gives him a taste of his own medicine and berates him for not only hitting Penny but for doing it in front of Sean.
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  • Ironic Echo: When Peck starts making inappropriate comments about Kathy cheating on Raymond, the former punches the latter twice before throwing a handkerchief to him and saying "clean yourself up". A few scenes later, Peck makes an elaborate ruse to make Raymond think Kathy is having an affair; they confront one another in an elevator, Peck beats up Raymond, and throws white underwear in Raymond's face, saying the same words Raymond said earlier.
  • Noble Bigot with a Badge:
    • Raymond at one point refers to Amy as a "dyke" when his wife becomes jealous of their relationship. He's still a noble cop who develops a genuine bond with her.
    • Subverted with Van Stretch. He scoffs at one of his collars claiming an unjust arrest by "nigger talk". He's also a Dirty Cop who smacks his wife around.
  • Papa Wolf: The tipping point that leads to Peck's breakdown was officers questioning his family.
  • Rape Is a Special Kind of Evil: Peck attempts to force Kathy to have sex with him.
  • Redemption Equals Death: Van calls Penny and mentions that he’s gonna talk to Raymond about Dennis and come clean about his corruption. Unfortunately, Dennis is listening to the whole conversation all while having sex with Penny, and the next night he sets up Van to be murdered.
  • Really Gets Around: Between three ex-wives and current in a fourth marriage, a slew of hookers-informants on the side, other cops' wives, and even the wife of the man he’s employed to carry out hits for? RGA is really an understatement for Dennis.
    • Wallace mentions that’s one of the reasons he doesn’t want to be promoted is because “he loves pussy too much”
  • Revised Ending: The original ending of the movie was different. After the entire scene where Peck kills Arrocases, and wounds Wallace and Raymond taking her to the hospital, Raymond calls his wife Kathy to tell her to lock the door, fearing that Peck will come after her. Peck, however, manages to sneak into their house and starts terrorizing her. He makes her take his shoe off and start cleaning his wounded foot, while at the same time, he starts talking to her in a very perverse, sexual way. When Raymond finally gets home, Peck is holding Kathy and keeps her mouth covered, so that she can't warn him, and then he gets shot by Peck. As Peck smiles at him, and prepares to kill Kathy, heavily wounded Raymond manages to run at him, crashing both of them out the window and into the swimming pool. Peck tries to drown Raymond, but Raymond manages to get his gun and shoots Peck, killing him, but he almost ends up drowning. Kathy then jumps into the pool and manages to get him out, and after desperate attempts to revive him and screaming at him not to die, he wakes up, vomits, and as he does so, Peck's dead body bobs out right next to them. Kathy starts laughing after Raymond revives, and the two of them then hold each other, as the ambulance is heard coming. According to what director Mike Figgis said in his book Liebestraum, this ending was removed and changed because it didn't test well with the audience during a test screening of his original cut of the film. This is why Figgis wrote and filmed a new ending for the final theatrical version. However, several parts of the original ending are shown in theatrical and television trailers of the film, and, until this day, remain the only available parts of it.
  • Smug Snake: One of Peck's most defining traits is his smug superiority into his belief he can get away with anything.
  • Would Hit a Girl:
    • Van smacks Penny around. One of the suspects he assaulted during an arrest was also a woman.
    • After thinking Kathy and Peck are having an affair, Raymond smacks her during one of her parties.
    • Peck kills Tova, shoots Amy, and threatens to kill Kathy.