His estranged friend, detective Mike Hammer (whose life Jack saved while losing his arm) is warned by police detective Pat Chambers to stay out of it but he nevertheless investigates the matter on his own.He speaks with Jack's widow Myrna, who says that they were attending a sex therapy clinic operated by the glamorous Dr. Hammer visits the clinic and finds a Government Issue bugging device in the doctor's office.
Along the way there are spectacular chases and ingenious gore, including a water bed that oozes blood. She's Mike Hammer's private secretary, and she is played by Laurene Landon, the tall blonde who was one of the wrestlers in Robert Aldrich's "All the Marbles." She is absolutely, breathtakingly, beautiful.
It all ends with Hammer storming a booby-trapped hideaway, alone and without a gun, then slithering through a last little fillip of bloody romance. And she has a light comic manner, a way about her, that's really fetching.
Somewhere in there with the Brando and Stallone bits is a sense of the Mick himself: Assante has watched Spillane, obviously, and has the bantam walk down pat – as with Biff Elliot and Spillane, Assante confirms that a small, broad-chested Hammer has a bulldog rather than bully quality needed for character empathy in the page-to-screen transfer of the brawling hero.
The Assante Hammer is outraged; he’s prepared to risk anything for his goal, because his Hammer simply does not give a damn; if he dies in the course of his quest, so be it – “You take life too serious,” he advises several terrified unwilling participants in his various war games.
Romero's black ops squad capture Hammer, torture him and cover the badly-beaten Hammer with cheap liquor, intending to push him to his death in traffic.
Hammer turns the tables on his captors, fights his way free and escapes.
In the wake of these extreme events, Hammer checks in on Dr Bennett at her practice and the two become lovers.
The twins' killer, Charles Kendricks, has been brainwashed by Romero, who sends him to abduct Velda.
The film initially received mixed reviews - some reviewers felt that certain plot lines from the novel had been toned down in favor of nudity, violence & extended action scenes - and observed that Cohen's script contained 1980s-era sub-plots not present in the novel, such as government conspiracies, torture and mind-control techniques (deployed by both the CIA and the Mafia).
Others felt that Cohen's CIA/Mafia back-story added a welcome sardonic quality in keeping with the spirit of Spillane and that graphic scenes of sex & gunplay were key to faithfully adapting the fevered narrative of the novel. "I, the Jury" has a few touches all its own, however, and one of them is named Velda.
Hammer's secretary Velda identifies Jack's receipts for gasoline near Bear Mountain close to a summer camp run by Hammer's old friend Joe Butler.