Review Date: March 08, 2000
Director: Brian DePalma
Writer: L. Cannon, J. Thomas, John Thomas
Producers: Tom Jacobson
Gary Sinise as Jim McConnell
Don Cheadle as Luc Goddard
Tim Robbins as Woody Blake
Jerry O'Connell as Phil Ohlmyer
Films like this generally get me wondering about the brass in Hollywood again. Didn't anybody recognize the crappiness in this script? Didn't they read the bad dialogue, the cheezy lines, the obvious derivative nature of the work (Mind you, with a director like DePalma at the helm, that ain't saying much!). Of course, you can't really blame the brass for the inclusion of Jerry O'Connell in this fine crew of thespians. 'Nuff said. Neither can you blame them for DePalma cranking up the juice on the film's musical score during the last fifteen minutes, presumably in order to wake the audience up (Okay, we get it Brian, this scene is supposed to be powerful...wow...yawn...my ears hurt!). So is anything salvageable in this movie? Sure. Gary Sinise does another great job, as does Cheadle, the film doesn't completely bore you as much as it just moves along slowly without anything really interesting happening, and yes, the "sand-twister" effect that you see in the commercial is well done. Other than that? I guess I could say that I admire how filmmakers have become so much more devious in their product placement strategies...oops, did I say "admire", I meant "am disgusted"! All in all, this movie delivers very little in actual substance, offers two-bit dialogue masked in a lot of sci-fi mumbo-jumbo, pretends to be deep when really it's just sappy, and eventually just settles into an ending which, other than presenting us with a pathetic computer graphic as a part of the story, gives us little more to think about than how we might be able to get our money back for sitting through this rehashed dreck. Go see THE NINTH GATE (8/10)...now there's a great movie!
And on a personal note, I think it's time for DePalma to stop worrying so much about his proverbial 12-minute uninterrupted film sequences, and start worrying more about how crappy his movies are getting.