Picks and Pans Review: Glitz

updated 10/24/1988 AT 01:00 AM EDT

originally published 10/24/1988 AT 01:00 AM EDT

NBC (Fri., Oct. 21, 9 p.m. ET)

B+

In an opening that has almost as much oomph as the start of a James Bond flick, Miami cop Jimmy (L.A. Law) Smits spots a bank robbery, chases the bad guys, saves some kids' lives and then gets shot. Next we see Smits recovering on a San Juan beach, trying to stop his girlfriend from working for some Atlantic City sleazoid. But she does. Then she dies. So Smits heads north but he's not sure why. "She was a girl that I slept with," he says. "She wasn't a girl I would marry. I guess that makes her my friend. I don't know what that makes me." While he searches for her killer, Smits falls for Markie (Night Court) Post as a lounge lizardess. Robin (One Life to Live) Strasser as a powerful casino owner falls for Smits. And while they pant over each other, John (Miami Vice) Diehl as a drooling psychopath hunts Smits down and tries to kill him. When you read that list of stars and credits, you may think that this is nothing but a bald NBC attempt to promote NBC stars. But don't be fooled by such network narcissism. Glitz, based on Elmore Leonard's best-seller, is better than that. It is filled with inventive characters, cool dialogue and just enough excitement. It is one neat movie.

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