|Index||7 reviews in total|
It starts out like Absolute Power with Clint Eastwood, but ends up no better than an average mystery thriller. Craig Sheffer stars as Nick Sager a former secret service agent who is brought back to investigate the suicide of one of the members of the President's inner circle. This is an okay mystery/suspense thriller about a guy who is trying to find out if it was suicide or murder while keeping himself and the ex-girlfriend alive. John Heard, a bad guy in almost every movie, plays one in Executive Power as drug dealer Cyrus Walker. Walker's job is to get rid of the ex-girlfriend and retrieve a tape from her that was left behind, which had something incriminating on it for someone in power. This is just a run of the mill, typical film that I may or may not see again. I think this is a film for die hard movie buffs.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
At the second half of the 1990s, the white house residents were
suddenly a goal of cinematic bombing. That lived a climax in 1997 in
specific, with sex scandals, corruption, planning fake wars, being
obsessed with wars, attempting murder, and murders all taking place in
a dark white house through a row of movies like (Murder at 1600),
(Absolute Power), (Shadow Conspiracy), (Wag the Dog), (The Second Civil
War) and (Executive Power).
Apparently, something was wrong. Originally, the presidential foundation was downed to earth, suspected, and sneered at in the 1970s with the presidency of Richard Nixon (1969 1974) after Vietnam and Watergate. The second wave was in the 1990s with the presidency of Bill Clinton (1993 2001) after investigating him on the Whitewater scandal, the White House FBI files controversy, and the White House travel office controversy, then the most famous at all Monica-gate. Simply after the president lied about spying in the 1970s, now he lied about sex in the 1990s. That led to a twister of doubt in the president's idealism, where he became not a human with mistakes, but drowned in sins.
Movies exploited that cinematically well. Serious or not, all of them referred to some kind of degeneration halted at the president, the president's men, and women as well. From cheater, to sadist, to killer, the white house became more morally blotted than a mafia family, and the man in the chair turned into no noble godfather !
Strangely that some of 1997's movies predicted, so rightly, of many events that happened short time after. Clinton-Monica's sex scandal of 1998 you can see shadows of it in (Absolute Power), (Wag the Dog), and (Executive Power). Attacking Africa then Iraq in 1998 for the sake of a fabricated war that may cover up the president's sex scandals you can see it in (Wag the Dog). As you see that sudden cinematic bombing didn't come from nothing, and wasn't all blank either !
This round, in (Executive Power), the list includes many many crimes, and that was the problem with it. The limit of the corruption along with the imagination was extended to loud extent. Here, the president hires a whore to make love to in the oval office, and because of her sickness she dies right in it. When the first lady knows, she pragmatically bargains to silence in exchange for having the local policy agenda. The first lady cheats on her husband with high exec of the white house who happens to have videotapes for that. The first lady recruits the police to cut the loose ends, and when it's complicated she resorts to a drug lord (??) to finish the job in return for canceling the DA accusations !! Unless it takes place in a black comedy or crime fantasy, then this is too much to believe. Or maybe it's so fit for just another V thriller, with naturally the bad meaning of the term !
Aside from the exaggerations, the lead actor is sure one of the weakest leads for an action thriller. The beard of him seemed as something was cut off a goat. The music wasn't any close to fine. But overall, the movie runs thoroughly. I loved the way that script keeps its conflict hot. The direction was beautiful. It managed somehow to make the unbelievable believable in some points, providing some entertainment that for an hour and a half V movie was very good. When I read the director's name (David L. Corley), I remembered that I watched 2 memorably good movies for him before. One as a writer, named (Solo 1996), and one as a writer / director named (Angel's Dance 1999). If you have watched these movies, you have to long for his next must-be-interesting movie, as I do. True (Executive Power) didn't fulfill that hankering fully, but maybe the next time.
Still, the most important point this movie comes up with is its look to the first lady. She's portrayed as none other than the bossy, so politically ambitious, Hilary Clinton at the time. However, showing her as the movie's incurable, super destructive, villain refers openly to the movie's maker's fear out of Mrs. Clinton's strong character over her husband, or her being on the chair someday, especially with the scene near the end in which she's filmed while sitting smiling on her husband's chair after eliminating all of her enemies, including the idealist lead himself. That feel of "I'm nasty, and in control" mirrored rare worry over Mrs. Clinton or maybe any woman would take over the chair for that matter !
OK, this is fiction, but amusing and executed very well. And with its paranoia, even if loudly made, it is still interesting than movies where the president is the man's man flawless hero like (Air Force One), produced in the same year by the way.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
Potatoes or Stove Top Stuffing? Either way, this one was a turkey! Actually,
it DOES provide an evening of entertainment for someone exhausted and brain
dead, after a long day's work. There IS lots of action and some decent
chemistry between Nick (Craig Sheffer) and Susan (Andrea Roth). For anyone
still alert enough to possess any mental faculties at ALL, though, the movie
is one for the Thanksgiving dinner table.
Sheffer plays a former presidential aid, who leaves the administration after the accidental, but quite unseemly death of a presidential play thing in the Oval Office. Two or three years later, his former partner, Greg Monroe (Doug Steindorff) urgently requests him to investigate the mysterious death of the only witness to the earlier deed, other than the two of them and the President.
(CONTAINS SPOILERS) As his investigation unfolds, Nick tries to protect Susan (Roth), a TV news anchor, and (Who would ever guess?) falls for her. When Greg suddenly calls off the investigation, Nick keeps on, since attempts on his and Susan's life are increasing. The whole plot becomes convoluted and confusing, with the power-hungry, manipulative First Lady (Joanna Cassidy) becomes involved in the investigation. In the end, it turns out she was having an affair with the murdered aid (her husband's Chief of Staff at one time) and is determined to see Susan dead, after retrieving a secret video of her and the dead man in bed. Everyone is convinced Susan knows of its existence and whereabouts although she doesn't until near the end.
Worse than the convoluted plot line is the ridiculous shoot-em-up action. If this were a comedic SPOOF of espionage/secret agent films, like Austin Powers or the Get Smart series, that would be one thing. But director David L. Corley is obviously TRYING to be serious. Several times, professional assassins have Susan in their gun sights, from well-hidden positions in dense undergrowth, etc. Every time, Nick somehow KNOWS they are there and manages to sneak up behind them and overpower them. Plus, time after time, Nick, with only a hand gun (and sometimes one for Susan) fights his way out of gangs of heavily-armed professional killers, unscathed. At one point he appears to take at least two bullets. Susan manages to get him to a motel room. There, apparently, the sheer affection she is beginning to feel for him, coupled with the power of her good looks, somehow heels his wounds with no other medical assistance needed! The next day he is back on his feet, as good as new!
THEN, when it's apparently Nick's time to die, just the opposite is true! After fighting their way out of absolutely ridiculous situations the entire film, the couple finds themselves standing in a dark alley, with a middle-aged crime boss standing on a platform in the dark, some 20 feet up. The man has probably not had to do his own shooting for 25 years and probably not much of a marksman by now. Now, ever, Nick's seemingly inexhaustible supply of bullets has run out. `Gee, I'm out of bullets,' (or something akin to that) he says sheepishly, almost shrugging, as if acknowledging that he has reached Corley's exit scene. Susan, though, standing about six inches away, has a fully loaded gun. The fiftyish crime boss leisurely draws his gun and fires through the darkness, at Susan. Nick jumps in front of her as he shoots. This time the bullet hits just right and Nick dies almost immediately. Susan calmly shoots back, dropping the crime boss with two shots. So why the heck didn't she just plug the old fart to START with??? Or why didn't she simply trade guns with Nick? Arrrrrrrgh!
Also, in the end, the First Lady's trusted aid is blown away by a rifle blast THROUGH THE WINDOW of her White House living quarters, after proving to be treacherous! Good grief, Mr. Corley! With a string of bodies already mounting, one would think this polished and highly ambitious First Lady could have disposed of her sneaky aid in about a MILLION better ways (i.e., food poisoning, a set-up car crash, alleged botched assassination attempt on HER, faked mugging/rape attempt, private plane crash, etc.) than being blown away with a rifle, through a White House window!
Plot holes the size of the White House itself keep this from being enjoyable for anyone not too tired to reason. It's not quite bad enough to be MST3000 fodder, but it might be useful as a film to show aspiring film makers as an example of how NOT to make an action/suspense flick! Now, pass the sweet potatoes, please!
This movie was OK - the typical suspense thriller that you watch on cable.
It's not worth going to the theater for, but it's not so bad that you'd be
compelled to channel surf in the middle. I must admit the only reason I
watched it was to see Craig Sheffer. He was great, as usual.
The thing I found most striking about this film was the volume of common grammatical errors. It was appalling. I will never understand why these types of errors aren't corrected during a screenplay's revision and a film's production.
While I watched this movie, I tried to figure out why they bothered making
it. Though the main plot of the movie is potentially good, there are all
sorts of unrelated/unnecessary subplots. The marketing people in Hollywood
must have dictated the multiple bad guys, perpetual double-crosses and the
man and woman who get too close and have sex. It's odd that we see more of
them having sex than we did of the President and his mistress. The many
plots and subplots make the film too broad and none of the characters are
properly developed - I really didn't feel like I knew any character, except
that everyone is corrupt and evil. The ending is totally incomplete - it
left me more than just wanting what might have been, but what was supposed
to be. In the end, there is really no explanation of why anyone does what
they do, except to serve as additional corrupt characters who commit a
double-cross. I'm surprised that so many established (and good) actors
agreed to make such a hollow movie. This seemed like a movie made by
students who are working on their 2nd or 3rd project.
Don't waste your time unless you are in a film class and want an example of what not to do when making a movie.
The banner says it all, this is one really bad movie, which is sad because I normally like Sheffer, and I have been impressed with Andrea Roth in other roles. This, however, is terrible. I wont waste any more time...its just that bad.
I gave this a 1. There are so many plot twists that you can never be sure to root for. Total mayhem. Everyone gets killed or nearly so. I am tired of cross hairs and changing views. I cannot give the plot away. Convoluted and insane. If I had paid to see this I would demand my money back. I wish reviews were more honest.
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