Template:Infobox film Next of Kin is a 1989 American action film directed by John Irvin and starring Patrick Swayze and Liam Neeson. The screenplay was based on a story of the same title, both written by Michael Jenning.
Plot[edit | edit source]
Truman Gates (Patrick Swayze), a Kentucky native raised in Appalachia, has migrated to Chicago to become a police officer. After his younger brother Gerald (Bill Paxton) becomes unemployed when the local coal mine closes, Truman persuades his brother to look for work in Chicago.
Soon after landing a job as a truck driver, Gerald's vehicle is hijacked by mobsters from the Chicago Outfit. When Gerald pulls a knife, he is immediately killed by Joey Rosellini (Adam Baldwin), the sadistic nephew of Outfit boss John Isabella (Andreas Katsulas). When the Don later confronts his nephew about this needless killing, Joey lies and says that it was in defense of his cousin's life.
When Gerald's body is discovered, Truman returns to Kentucky for the funeral. When his surviving brother, Briar Gates (Liam Neeson), insists on a traditional mountain blood feud, Truman urges his family to let the police deal with Gerald's murder. Briar is disgusted, as he considers Truman's reluctance to be disgraceful.
Determined to deal with the murderers in his own way, Briar travels to Chicago. Meanwhile, Truman desperately tries to solve the crime before Briar. He approaches John Isabella and explains the mountain code to him. He suggests that if Gerald's murderer surrenders peacefully, it would save them both a lot of trouble. John, however, refuses on general principle and Truman continues his investigation. The Isabella mobsters come to kill Briar in his hotel but manages to escape thanks to the bungling mobster (Paul Greco). Truman soon learns the identity of the hijackers from a witness. To his amazement, he learns that Lawrence Isabella (Ben Stiller), the Don's son and a criminal informant, witnessed the murder. He approaches Lawrence and tells him that he intends to arrest Joey.
Soon afterwards, Lawrence is brutally tortured and finally murdered with Briar's shotgun by Joey, but he had to tell the Don that it was someone else. A devastated John sanctions a hit on the supposed culprit. However, Briar first breaks into Rosellini's trucking company and engages in a gunfight with Joey's crew and kills 2 of Joey's guys and Joey walks in and shoots Briar twice. Fatally wounded, Briar dies in Truman's arms when he arrives.
With two brothers dead and evidence for an arrest lacking, Truman resigns from the police force. The morning after the shooting, Harold (Michael J. Pollard), the manager of the apartment that Briar was staying at when he was going after the Outfit that killed Gerald, the youngest brother of Truman and Briar, hears about it and calls his kin Hollis Gates, his cousin, and informs him of Briar's death. Truman paints, "You forgot one," on Joey's car after he throws one of Joey's guys into the window of a restaurant. Enraged, Joey vows to murder Truman without his uncle's permission. Meanwhile in Kentucky, the Gates family gathers together and travels to Chicago to begin a war against the Outfit.
Learning of the Gates family's determination to seek revenge, Joey dismisses the threat, saying that the Gates family, "plow rocks for a living." John responds, "That's what they said about 'our' people back in Sicily."
Truman lures the Rosellini crew to a darkened cemetery, where an extended gun battle ensues with all of Briar's weapons he got from Briar's apartment. Truman ambushes and silently kills 2 members of Joey's crew with a compound bow and one with a knife, which in turn, the guy Truman killed shoots Truman in the leg. Then, just as Truman is cornered by the remaining four, the Gates family descends to his rescue. Once the remaining mobsters are killed or cornered, Truman and Joey engage in hand-to-hand combat. Truman has Joey pinned on the ground with a knife to his throat when John Isabella arrives and, at gunpoint, orders Truman to drop the knife and move out of the way. To Joey's horror, the Don has learned the truth about Lawrence's murder. The Don points the gun at Joey. Joey asks him what is he going to do. The Don tells Joey, "This is for killing my son," and shoots him dead.
With Gerald's murderer finally dealt with, the Gates and Isabella families make peace. At the police station, Truman sees Jessie. She hears about Briar's death from Truman when she asked about him. After that, they walk out of the station and it goes straight to black.
Filming Locations Kentucky[edit | edit source]
Some of the home scenes and the opening scenes were filmed in the small Perry County Kentucky coal camp of Hardburly.Others were done at the MC Napier High School Gym in Hazard and in Letcher County near Carbonton.
Main cast[edit | edit source]
- Patrick Swayze as Truman Gates
- Liam Neeson as Briar Gates
- Adam Baldwin as Joey Rosselini
- Helen Hunt as Jessie Gates
- Bill Paxton as Gerald Gates
- Ben Stiller as Lawrence Isabella
- Andreas Katsulas as John Isabella
- Michael J. Pollard as Harold
- Ted Levine as Willy Simpson
- Del Close as Frank
- Valentino Cimo as Rhino
- Paul Greco as Leo
- Vincent Guastaferro as Paulie
- Paul Herman as Tony Antonelli
- Don Herion as Zimmer
- Starla Fugate as Woman Pouring Coffee
Jean Ritchie as mother to Gates family
Reception[edit | edit source]
Soundtrack[edit | edit source]
A soundtrack to the film was also released. Here is the track listing:
- "Brother to Brother" - Gregg Allman & Lori Yates - 3:58
- "Hey, Backwoods" - Rodney Crowell - 4:11
- "Hillbilly Heart" - Ricky Van Shelton - 2:56
- "Straight and Narrow" - Ricky Skaggs - 2:51
- "Paralyzed" - Sweethearts of the Rodeo - 3:00
- "The Yard Sale" - Billy Lawson - 2:24
- "My Sweet Baby's Gone" - Charlie Daniels - 3:15
- "Pyramid of Cans" - George Jones - 2:31
- "Brothers" - Patrick Swayze & Larry Gatlin - 4:10
- "Wailing Sax" - Duane Eddy - 3:19
[edit | edit source]
- Next of Kin at the Internet Movie Database
- Template:Allmovie title
- Template:Tcmdb title