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The dialogue, courtesy of screenwriter and horror-movie director Larry Cohen (It's Alive; Q--The Winged Serpent), is satisfyingly hard-boiled and slips in plenty of subversive sideswipes at rampant capitalism. ("It's the American Way, Dennis," says Woods, detailing how he helped his boss rise via robbery and murder. "I'm a businessman, an executive.") This certainly isn't the only movie to get mileage out of the symbiotic relationship between cop and crook (see Michael Mann's Heat), but it works several neat variations on the theme, with Dennehy and Woods both at the top of their respective forms. If the film never quite lives up to its potential--the required final confrontation between the two principals doesn't materialise and Victoria Tennant is thrown away as Dennehy's love-interest--it remains a way better than average thriller with its roots deep in the best B-movie traditions.
On the DVD: Best Seller on disc has no extras apart from the theatrical trailer. The transfer is good and clean, and preserves the original's full-width framing. --Philip Kemp