By Erin Richter
Updated July 27, 2001 at 04:00 AM EDT

A publicist-turned-fearless journalist dedicates her life to exposing Dublin’s increasingly powerful drug lords before being shot to death while sitting in her car. Seemingly begging for big-screen treatment (which has reportedly been in the works at Disney), the gripping story of award-winning Irish reporter Veronica Guerin surprisingly lacks punch in this fictionalized, straight-to-cable retelling. Allen masterfully embodies the determined writer, but the surface-scratching pic wastes its energy on brutal, one-dimensional criminals at the expense of nailing the tale’s innate dramatic tension.