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(Review originally written at 23 April 2008)

Ehren Kruger has written some good things in his life but this movie really isn't one of them. It's an overwritten script, with completely unnecessary twists and turns that tries to make the movie look more clever than it in fact really is. Instead it makes the movie a completely implausible one and the movie would had worked out much better if it was just a brainless simple action flick.

Also sort of sad that director John Frankenheimer had to end his career with movies such as this. In the '60's he was a great director who made movies such as "Birdman of Alcatraz", "All Fall Down", "The Manchurian Candidate" and "Grand Prix" and in the '70's with movies such as "French Connection II" and "Black Sunday". Yet he remains best known to the general public for the movies he did in his later career, of which this movie is one of them.

Problem is really the movie its script. On the one hand it's a simple action movie script that's hanging together from its coincidence while on the other hand it tries to be a really clever one, involving around a 'criminal master plan', that however instead comes across as really stupid in the end.

The movie also suffers from some poor casting choices. It has a great cast but yet not everyone feels like he's at the right place. I'm no Ben Affleck hater but this just wasn't the right role for him to play. He felt miscast, also since he often approached his character more in a comical way than in a serious action movie way, it seemed to me. Gary Sinise is a great actor but he doesn't really play a good and strong enough villain in this movie, also because of his crazy look perhaps. Other actors such as Dennis Farina really aren't given enough room in his movie to shine, which is a real wasted opportunity.

It's not like this movie is the worst the genre currently has to offer but it's not exactly one of the best or most memorable movies either. It's still a movie that mildly entertains, or at least it's not a movie that ever really bores, so the movie still remains somewhat watchable when there really isn't anything better on TV or to rent for you.

5/10

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About Frank Veenstra

Watches movies...writes about them...and that's it for now.
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