Murder at the Presidio, not to be confused with the other "murder at the Presidio" movie called The Presidio, is about a murder that occurs at The Presidio. The Presidio is an army base, and that's the last time I'm even saying the word Presidio in this review.
Murder at the Army Base stars Lou Diamond Phillips as a military detective with a haunted past and a surly disposition who is called in to investigate when a woman is killed (at an army base). The deceased woman was, prior to her death, the wife of a now-grieving military policeman. And Lou Diamond Military Detective has, apparently, shown up at the wrong time indeed.
Imagine your shock when you realize that the local MPs don't take too kindly to Detective Diamond. Consider how fascinated you'll be as "Encyclopedia Brown"-type clues fly listlessly out of left field and land directly on to Sergeant Columbo's lap. Try not to snooze off as our slow-moving hero takes some time out to woo, bed, and then stupidly dismiss a lovely lady MP (but take note, because she'll be a murder suspect for at least 11.4 seconds).
Basically, Murder at the P-spot is a warm and mushy stew comprised of just about every single mini-mystery / investigation procedural conceit you've ever seen. Lou Diamond Soldier Cop finds a clue ... and then he's ordered to stay off the case; he finds another clue ... gets punched in the neck by the other MPs; a huge and flopping clue lands right on his head; full speed ahead to the predictably gift-wrapped solution to the mystery. But don't forget to make up with that sexy police-vixen before the credits roll. Insert disinterested click on the remote control -->here<--.
It's full-bore standard all the way; if you dig your cable flicks all but entirely prefabricated and astronomically predictable, feel free to give this one a shot. It's the 90-minute equivalent of a particularly "awesome" episode of Murder She Wrote -- only it's got a few bare breasts, Lou Diamond Phillips instead of Angela Lansbury, and it takes place at the Presidio. (Try it out loud; it's a fun word to say.)
Video: It's a Widescreen (1.78:1, non-anamorphic) transfer, which brings this rather fuzzy-looking cable flick home in its original form: fuzzy. Much of the film looks as if it were shot with a lens made of very fine pantyhose.
Audio: Dolby Digital 5.1, in your choice of English, Spanish, Portuguese, or Japanese. Optional subtitles are available in all four languages, because nothing's as fascinating overseas as a murder at the presidio.
Extras: A donkey-cart full of trailers for Art Heist, Face of Terror, Kung Fu Hustle, Layer Cake, Stephen King Presents Kingdom Hospital, Stone Cold, and The Marksman.
The girl who plays the lady MP who sleeps with Lou Diamond Commando Gumshoe is Victoria Pratt, a Canadian actress who's really, really pretty. She's all that kept me awake during the legendary tale of Murder at the Presidio.
But if you're the sort who likes the dime-novel mysteries, especially the ones that you can predict every simple step of the way, feel free to give this one a weekend rental. It's trite, simplistic, and completely routine in every conceivable fashion, but at least it's only 89 minutes long.