When I was ten years old my hobbies included: playing outside, riding my bike, dominating Frogger on Playstation, and watching my fair share of TV shows and movies. At the time my favorite movies to rent were typical ten-year-old fare, things like Peter Pan and the Disney Robin Hood, you know, kid stuff. One day my mom decided to go to the movie rental store and picked out a few movies without us (probably because my brother and I picked the same aforementioned movies every time). She came home with the movie Training Day. You know Training Day. It’s the 2001 coming of age story of a young cop (Ethan Hawke) who gets mentored by a kindly veteran Cop (Denzel Washington) and they find friendship and have a few laughs along the way. What could go wrong, it sounds like a perfect movie for a couple of lame ten-year-olds to watch with their mom right?
Training Day is pretty brutal and super gritty. We were tricked because we only knew Denzel as the lovable coach in Remember the Titans so we figured he was a good guy. Little did we know that Denzel could be a dirty LAPD narcotics detective. We got probably about 15 minutes into Training Day when my mom finally realized that this was not going to be an appropriate movie for kids. I think in that span you get about three N-words out of Denzel, lots of violence and swearing, and Ethan Hawke does PCP, not exactly what my mom was probably expecting to see. To be fair I have no idea what she was expecting when she rented it.
This left me scarred for the better part of the last 18 years. I never fully recovered from the first 15 minutes of Training Day. I finally watched Training Day all the way through for the first time this week and I can officially say that 28-year-old Phil likes Training Day a lot more than 10-year-old Phil.