Review Date: August 28, 2001
Director: Phil Alden Robinson
Writer: Phil Alden Robinson, Lawrence Lasker, Walter F. Parkes
Producers: Lawrence Lasker, Walter F. Parkes
I think it has a lot to do with the fact that I just love the concept of any real underground/ behind-the-scenes/ secret societies or gangs that hook up and do crazy shite together. In this case, these dudes all seemed to be living out their childhood dreams as adults. Spying on others, cracking into other people's companies and getting paid to do it and basically seeing and doing everything that none of us can do.
But more than anything, I think it was the casting of this film that drew me in completely. Talk about an eclectic bunch!! Robert Redford, River Phoenix, Dan Aykroyd, Ben Kingsley, Sidney Poitier...I mean, can you picture any of these guys together?!? Well, maybe Kingsley and Redford... But in this movie it worked and I quite enjoyed the rapport between the bunch of them (especially their differences, which make it all so much more fun...with Poitier standing out).
The story was pretty solid as well, with Redford's past indiscretions coming back to haunt him, and I also enjoyed the little back-and-forth that he and his ex- (Mary McDonnell) had in the film. Definitely not your typical lovey-dovey kinda thang!
Overall, the film provides for some cool insight into the world of hackers, spies, secrets hidden from the rest of us nerds by the government (X-Files, anyone?), conspiracy theories, some rock solid interplay between all of the diverse characters and quite the intriguing tale.
On a side note, this was one of River Phoenix's last pictures released before he died. It's not a very big role but he plays it pretty well. A sad story in his, that's fer sure...