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The Fugitive More at IMDbPro »

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Is it just me...

Author: Johnny Hollywood ( from Sydney, Australia
3 December 2011

…Or are all American thrillers basically the same movie, just slightly altered and repackaged each time? Okay, I know at heart that there are some obvious details in each film that make it different to ones before it, but I can't be the only one who's thought that, by simply pulling a bunch of dangerous-sounding buzz words out of the air (words like 'prosecution', 'corruption', 'mistaken identity' and 'manhunt') I could form the foundation of the next big action thriller. So why, then, is Andrew Davis' The Fugitive, a film that contains all these base ingredients and more, so much fun to watch? Short answer: a solid story, good acting and a cast of characters that fit into their respective roles like a favourite pair of pyjamas. Long answer: by all means, read on.

Harrison Ford is Dr. Richard Kimble, a respected man sentenced to prison for murdering his wife, despite being adamant that it was not him, but a mysterious one-armed man, who committed the crime. On the bus ride to the big house, the other prisoners stage a daring escape, allowing Kimble to flee and begin a life of anonymity whilst seeking out the real killer. That is, until he crosses paths with Sam Gerard (Tommy Lee Jones), a hard-nosed US Marshal who cares not for Kimble's excuses, and whose only concern is restoring the status quo.

Excluding the excellent Indiana Jones trilogy (notice I've left out the fourth instalment, which I refuse to mention by name), Ford has made this genre his forte, making him a natural fit for the desperate, determined Kimble. Jones earns the Best Supporting Actor Oscar by playing the typical Jones role to great effect: a no-nonsense tough guy with a sideswiping sense of humour. And Joe Pantoliano, best known as Ralph Cifaretto (or Cypher, if you're no Sopranos fan) makes under-appreciated contributions as Gerard's right-hand man.

Suspense is on high supply throughout. My personal favourite is Kimble's attempt to hide in plain sight at the hospital, a tense and dramatic set piece that sets a paranoid tone for the rest of the film. But there is a plethora of energetic, 'edge-of-your-seat' moments to satisfy film connoisseurs and action junkies alike, including the sewer chase, the St. Patrick's Day parade and the rooftop climax, all of which comply with the conventions of an action thriller nicely against the backdrop of a bleak, but not quite noir, Chicago CBD.

Speaking of conventions, it's clear that Davis has made a tight pace the top priority in The Fugitive, as the entire film is determined to remove any and all obstacles that would otherwise slow the movie down. Character development is restricted mainly to Ford's character, but is sprinkled in just enough to keep the rest of the cast from looking like cardboard cut-outs. But most pleasing was the omission of a romantic subplot. At different times during production, both Julianne Moore and Jane Lynch were scripted as Kimble's love interest. Despite the obvious pitfalls this would create from a logical perspective (considering Kimble spends the whole movie trying to avenge his beloved wife), it also sounds like the director has dodged a minefield of clichés by avoiding the beaten path; something I am very grateful for.

Admittedly, the film becomes a little convoluted in the third act. Depending on how much you've enjoyed The Fugitive, this alone might be enough to warrant a second viewing, but otherwise it's nothing that a quick trip to the IMDb won't fix. If you're looking for a theme to take away, I suppose the movie could act as an exposition of human nature in desperate times. However, I doubt that was on the agenda during filming, and so the film should instead be enjoyed as was intended: an absorbing, high-drama roller-coaster, which I expect will remain a staple of this genre for many decades to come.

*There's nothing I love more than a bit of feedback, good or bad. So drop me a line on and let me know what you thought of my review.*

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A good thriller flick

Author: rtneupane from Africa
16 April 2011

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Well I had seen the Hindi movie " Criminal" starring Manisha Koirala. So, scene by scene, dailogue by dailogue was copied by criminal from this movie till 1st 1 hour. Fugitive is an amazing movie and never lets you get bored even for a minute. All in all, a good thriller movie that has a good pace and keeps your mind busy with unexpected twists.

The movie is about a husband Dr.Richard Kimble ( Ford) who is convicted of his beloved wife's murder.God gives him one more chance when he flees from the bus carrying the criminals that meets with accident.Now his objective is to hunt down the real killer. Now this task is not so easy when you have a detective Gerad( Tomy lee) who has not let his whole team sleep just to get to this guy. Detective wont give up in his search and so wont Kimble in search of his wife's murder..Detective in every attempt misses Kimble by few seconds..

A well directed movie... You can watch it if you are bored and want to see a good thriller flick..

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Fast paced action with great performances

Author: lisa-w1 from United States
24 March 2011

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

The fugitive is just a great film for so many reasons. First of all, I love it because Sam Gerard, the US marshal on the hunt for the wrongly accused DR. Richard Kimble treats his team whom he refers to as his "kids" like family. He actually mothers them, telling the lone female on the team to wear two coats, while advising Noah not to let someone give him any you know what about his pony tail. This type of camaraderie really appeals to me. And as far as performances are concerned, Tommy Lee Jones is outstanding. His vocal intonation is very expressive, conveying a gamut of emotion from humor to kindness to menace.

And hey, let's give it to the guy, he wasn't exactly a teenager when this movie came out but he was running and jumping with the best of them. And I really admire Sam Gerard because he was totally dedicated to what he thought was the truth--Kimble was convicted in a court of law and that was all he needed to know. This is why he says he doesn't care when Kimble tells him he didn't kill his wife. But at the end of the movie when the truth comes out about who actually killed Helen Kimble Gerard is totally willing to accept it no holds barred. I love that.

Love the "Peter Pan" dive into the water, train wreck, running around in the st paddy's day parade, all of it. See it if you can.

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A great film, with some great actors - a must-see

Author: JimmySturt from United Kingdom
9 October 2010

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

This film is a definite must see for all you who search for a good, strong and interesting story line, quality acting, and happy ending where the good guy always wins. Harison Ford, Tommy Lee Jones - two of the best male actors ever born. This film has a very interesting story line, keeping your interest from start to finish, and you will not be disappointed by the ending. There is definitely a lot of sympathy created for Dr. Richard Kimble as he looses his wife, is accused of killing her, and then has to jump waterfalls, navigate sewers and investigate hospitals to prove his innocence and bring the one-armed killer of his wife to justice. And best not forget the icing on the cake: a huge train wreck, guaranteed to keep you awake to witness through the rest of this outstanding film - an 8 outta 10 on the Jimmimeter :)

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your fugitive's name is Doctor Richard Kimble Go get him!

Author: bluesman-20 from Canada
9 July 2008

Fantastic retelling of the classic TV series. When I first saw this I was put off by how they explained why Helen Kimble was murdered but after seeing it over and over and over again I've come to respect the originality of the movie and the screenwriter's ability to start the story put a exciting middle to it and finally a nail biting climax and a satisfactory ending to a edge of your seat thriller. A lot of people have put this movie on a high platform and rightly so in 92 this movie showed us how it was done. It outclassed Speed and others of it's ilk. The main reason is the chemistry between Jones and ford they create a fine tight rope of a drama and action flick. Jones however provides what comedy relief there is intentionally. His Gerald differs from Barry Morse's Gerald in that he is even more obessessed and he refuses to listen to anyone except his instincts maybe it's his finest role to date. It did bring him an Oscar. Harrison Ford carries the movie pretty much like Richard Kimble he's smart he's quick and he's relentless. Ford captures you from the first screen shot until the credits roll. The movie is a fine roller coaster of a ride the stunts are fantastic and the story is tight. This movie should be included in film classes as a example of how to make a great movie.

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Enjoy every minute

Author: gcd70 from Melbourne, Australia
2 December 2007

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Based upon the popular television series of the mid 60's, this thriller converts well to the big screen thanks to some competent direction from Andrew Davis, and two sure-footed performances from the lead stars.

Harrison Ford adds yet another character to his already impressive collection as Dr. Richard Kimble, a man who, whilst on the run, searches for the one-armed man he claims killed his wife. And Tommy Lee Jones continues to grow in stature, after his Oscar nominated performance in "J.F.K.", with a very good turn as Deputy Gerard, the man pursuing Kimble.

Davis develops tension early and maintains it well, right up until the suitable, though none too surprising, ending. Plot complexities near the finish may lose some viewers, but most of the audience will enjoy every minute. James Newton Howard's score is effective.

Sunday, October 3, 1993 - Croydon Twin Cinema

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three words :Tommy Lee Jones

Author: disdressed12 from Canada
3 June 2007

this action/thriller/murder mystery is directed By Andrew Davis(Under Siege)it is intended to be a Harrison Ford vehicle,but the movie is really owned by Tommy Lee Jones.Jones plays a U.S. Marshall on the trial of a a high profile,respected doctor(Ford)who finds himself accused of the murder of his wife(Sela Ward).Jones brings some great intensity to role,yet at the same time he manages to be understated.not an easy task,but Jones is more than equal to the task.this movie is based The series of the same name from the 60's,but how accurate It is to its source material is anyones guess.obviously the film has been updated for contemporary audiences.the movie is quite exciting and fast paced,with some good suspenseful moments.there's also a few plot twists to keep you guessing.i rather enjoyed it.for me, "The Fugitive" is an 8/10

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Excellent, but ending unrealistic

Author: T Mobile from the Local Fluff
26 April 2007

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

I was a young man in college when this movie came out and Harrison Ford's acting was so forceful that I briefly considered becoming a vascular surgeon! From the beginning this movie keeps you involved. The train wreck on the silver screen felt like you were there, no surprise since the director derailed an actual train for the footage (I have seen the wreckage myself in S.C.).

The only complaint I have is the end when Dr. Nichols, a highly regarded doctor despite his under-handed dealings with the drug company, suddenly transforms quite unexpectedly into the prototypical, dastardly villain bent on killing Harrison Ford's character even if it means taking out a few marshals in the process. I don't recall the absurdity of the end in the theater, but subsequent airings on TV have made it more than apparent that the studio was in a hurry to wrap up the filming versus a more thoughtful and dramatic ending.

At any rate, having lived in Chicago the past couple of years, it has also been fun recognizing the filming locations.

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In A Word? Solid! In Two Words? Edgy & Enjoyable!

Author: Elswet from .: Fiendish Writings in the Dark :.
24 March 2007

Solid describes everything about this production, from the casting to the editing to the mixing. There are no holes, no weak performances, no wasted film. This is about as close to a perfect film as they get.

Tommy Lee Jones, while not the "official" star, IS the star of this work. Harrison Ford, rightfully, plays an awesome secondary lead in this gritty, complicated actioner. This work competently generates some heady atmosphere, leading to a few nice edge-of-your-seat moments.

This is one of the best action films ever made, with an involving story, wholly believable characters, and an execution so realistic it sells you the whole bill of goods.

I thoroughly enjoy this work, and can watch it again and again.

Don't forget to check out its deserving sequel, "U.S. Marshalls." It's awesome, too.

The Fugitive rates a solid 9/10 from...

the Fiend :.

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Still pacey after all these years

Author: prop03 from Australia
18 October 2006

Put together more than 13 years ago, The Fugitive is still worth a look on DVD. It is a fast-paced thriller, with excellent special effects, two lead actors at the top of their craft, and a story-line that keeps you on the edge of your seat right until the end.

The story in brief: Rich doctor accused of murdering his wife protests his innocence, claiming the murder was committed by a one-armed man he saw at the murder scene. The doctor is found guilty, and sentenced to death. Circumstances provide an illegal escape from prison, and the doctor, now the fugitive, has to prove his innocence by finding the one-armed killer.

While doing this he saves the life of one of his prison guards, saves the life of a boy needing emergency surgery and spares the life of his chief pursuer who would have undoubtedly killed him in a heartbeat. Sounds too trite? In the context of this film, and with a frenetic Tommy Lee Jones and Harrison Ford being... well, Harrison Ford, the film actually works quite well.

Director Andrew Davis has provided a movie that has stayed fresh and exciting.

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