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Murder at 1600
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Murder at 1600 More at IMDbPro »

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6 out of 12 people found the following review useful:

Not Bad for a Friday Night at Home

Author: Ralph Michael Stein ( from New York, N.Y.
16 May 2003

With improbability firmly anchored to impossibility, Honest Dedicated Cop meets Wacko National Security Flacks in "Murder at 1600". The viewer's time passes agreeably. No stress, no strain.

A young woman is found brutally slain in the White House. What else is new? There's no depth to this film, just some fast action and quick takes of D.C. scenery.

Wesley Snipes is a detective with steely resolve and an attitude. Diane Lane is a Secret Service agent, an Olympics gold medalist (not irrelevant to the plot). She's beautiful, very beautiful. They make a great team.

And Alan Alda - he's out of his usual acting persona here. See the film to find out how.

You have to totally suspend disbelief here and accept that not everyone in government is the best and the brightest. But Diane Lane is beautiful, very beautiful.

5/10 (a high rating for this kind of well-crafted but not exactly gripping drama). But Diane Lane is beautiful, very beautiful.

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6 out of 12 people found the following review useful:

Bog standard, workman-like thriller

Author: bob the moo from United Kingdom
21 January 2002

At a time when America's foreign policy has put them in a situation where American servicemen are being held in China and conflict is possible, things are complicated by the discovery of a young woman's body in a room in the White House (the 1600 of the title). DC Detective Regis is brought in to investigate the crime but finds himself hampered by the secret service covering up and classifying key evidence sources. Regis, with the help of Agent Nina Chance finds himself drawn up into a deeper conspiracy.

This is quite a workman-like thriller. It's not very good but it's not very bad either. The plot starts well but gets a little ponderous at times and perhaps requires more than a little suspension of disbelief at times (a point where Snipes breaks into the White House through underground tunnels and walks round dressed as a cleaner is perhaps a step too far!). However the overall concept is ok and it is easy to believe that the Secret Service would take any steps necessary to cover anything that could embarrass the Presidency. However it's also a big leap to take for granted that Snipes and co. could get quite as far as they do.

Snipes is OK in the lead, however he doesn't quite get above the role of "tough cop" that we see in tonnes of cop movies. Attempts to give him a deeper character by having him build historical models in his spare time didn't really cut it for me. Similarly Lane is pretty much a non-entity in the film - I just didn't have any strong memories for her or her character at the end, I don't know if this was her fault or the fault of the script. The instantly recognisable Benzali is good and manages to bring a little menace to the role but doesn't have a great deal to work with. The role of National Security Advisor is well played by Alan Alda - he does a good job, but I did have a problem at the start of the film because I don't think of him in this type of film (Manhattan Murder Mystery - Yes, any other genres - not really), however once I got past this I was fine. Ronny Cox (he of so many screen bad guys) is given a small thankless role as the President. He doesn't have much to do and again it just never feels like he's comfortable with the role - contrast with his characters in things like Robocop and Total Recall to see the difference in his performances.

Overall this is a standard thriller that isn't very memorable but will pass the time easily enough. Once watched I doubt that you'll rush to see it again.

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0 out of 1 people found the following review useful:

Good Thriller....Wesley Snipes' best Movie. **** out of *****

Author: Welshfilmfan from Cardiff, Wales
7 January 2009

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

As this begins...especially seeing as it's a Wesley Snipes movie, you expect a by-the-numbers Straight to DVD type film....but actually 'MURDER AT 1600' Is a very good Thriller overlooked on it's release in 1997.

A young woman is found murdered in the Bathroom at 1600 Pennsylvannia Ave, otherwise known as 'The Whitehouse'.

A woman murdered at the Whitehouse, not too dissimilar to the same year's Clint Eastwood Movie Absolute Power, though both Movies tanked at the Box Office....Anyway, Wesley Snipes plays DET. Harlan Regis who is the Homicide detective leading the investigation on the scene, he soon realises that the man the Secret Service have in custody is quite possibly innocent and there could be a Conspiracy leading right up to the Commander in Chief, Regis digs deeper along with help from Secret service agent Nina Chance (Diane lane) and they soon find that both of their lives are in danger as they are getting closer to the truth.

As I said in my Summary, This has to be Snipes' best movie,before he went the way of Steven Seagal & Jean Claude Van Damme in Trashy straight to DVD Actioners that are on blockbusters bottom shelf, admittedly it flopped on it's release taking only $41m Worldwide, but I think It's very well written Conspiracy flick with a superb supporting cast that includes Ronny Cox,Dennis Miller,Alan Alda & Daniel Benzali.

**** out of *****

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0 out of 1 people found the following review useful:

By the book thriller

Author: usc02134 from United States
21 September 2005

I mildly enjoyed the film, but it could have been much better. They need to increase the subplots more in movies these days. More of Wesley being kicked out of his apt would have added dramatic suspense to the thriller suspense. It's so fast foodish, this film. Just like a typical studio executive's notes that miss the story-telling point. Movies have to be a 7 course meal for the price at the box office, but they deliver a burger and fries every time. That's why indie films are so good. Overall, the acting was good. Wesley always good, Diane is just great. Directing good. But again the story was a 6. Recommend only for a rainy night Overall a 6.

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1 out of 3 people found the following review useful:

another president saving film i am sick of this concept

Author: M MALIK from Pakistan
20 November 2012

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

i mean it i have seen many films like these where only American president is at risk someone will assassinate him common.why not just choose other countries president there are so many countries.

i have no problem with patriotism shown in films but this is too much.

the most boring Wesley snipes movie this was.

i told you the plot already some people must save presidents ass.but American films always have Russians as enemies this one got one of them own inside the white house.

no action no real sex no bored me

my rating is 1/10 just forget murder at 1600 its another stupid film

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1 out of 3 people found the following review useful:

One of the poorer movies during Snipes' height of fame

Author: afilmaday from United Kingdom
10 May 2012

I really wanted to like this movie, be invested on either how awesomely 90s it is or how interesting certain aspects were, but it fails. It's not a bad movie, it's a dull movie.

Firstly, we have the sex scene in the Oval Office, which you can tell on how it's conveyed that director Dwight Little thought this was controversially awesome, and to tell us this is a mature movie. (Many 90s films had these shadowed sex scenes to signal this is going to be an intertwining tale of double crossings, sleaze and conspiracies.) We also have Harlan's introduction, using unorthodox methods to disarm a suicidal man with typical smart aleck. (Many 90s films couldn't shake off 80s cop maverick and were used not as a plot point or moment of hilarity like its predecessor, but as a quick ploy for character emphasis, only never to be used again throughout the movie.) Then a bombardment of clichés; Nina revolts against the Secret Service, Chief Spikings is heavily secretive and dismissive towards the detectives and Harlan is a 'man of the streets' with own problems but always gets the job done. Nothing original is presented.

The closest we get to something a little different is Harlan's apartment where we see a miniature recreation of Washington in the 19th Century; he talks to Nina about his father being a "history buff" and through this he too is fascinated by American history but…this goes nowhere! He never talks about history, this trait quickly disperses and no reference is made later. I'm guessing the point is to emphasise his love for the city, but it needn't go to such lengths of making this.

The cigar Harlan had throughout was a cheap, tacky attempt at conveying a hardened, maverick cop of the streets, a man with a problem with authority etc. because he never smokes it! It's not even alight, which you could forgive as Snipes is a non-smoker, but to have it there is really disjointing viewing.

The performances from the surrounding cast weren't particularly memorable; none of them were bad or outwardly irritating but were just there. The closest to any intrigue was Dennis Miller who definitely tried to add humour to the script.

Murder at 1600 is dull and unoriginal. Everything here has been done many times before and whenever its shows any signs of originality, it's quickly discarded for safer choices. A time-filler flick.

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1 out of 3 people found the following review useful:

Whose Jurisdiction?

Author: bkoganbing from Buffalo, New York
6 June 2010

What happens when a homicide is committed at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, the Presidential Mansion, the White House? My own guess is that it would fall under the jurisdiction of the FBI. But they don't enter the picture here because guarding the president and his family falls under the purview of the Secret Service. I think the FBI would have first jurisdiction because the White House is federal property sitting on federal land, a murder in a Post Office would fall under the same rule.

But when a White House staffer who's been having an affair with the president's son Tate Donovan is murdered and her body left in the public bathroom there, the Washington, DC homicide squad is called in. That would be Wesley Snipes and he's partnered with Secret Service liaison Diane Lane. They are called in by White House National Security Adviser Alan Alda who wants due diligence and as much help as possible in solving the murder. And of course he's got an interest in his president Ronny Cox and first lady Diane Baker not to mention the institution of the presidency itself.

Snipes and Lane start pursuing one line of investigation, but soon get sidetracked into another because the clues given them don't quite pan out. While this is going on, the country and the president are involved in a hostage crisis with North Korea, another Pueblo like incident. And it turns out they are related.

Murder At 1600 is a nice political thriller whose pace doesn't let up at all. There are two other good performances of note in it, Dennis Miller plays Snipes's laconic partner who acts a whole lot like comedian Dennis Miller. And Daniel Benzali plays one creepy head of the White House Secret Service detail.

As for Alan Alda those of you who know and appreciate Alan Alda as Hawkeye Pierce from MASH, you will see an Alan Alda in this film who would probably have Hawkeye shot as a traitor.

I recommend Murder At 1600 very highly, try to catch it when broadcast.

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1 out of 3 people found the following review useful:

Anonymous cop thriller but adequate enough to pass the time with - 65%

Author: Benjamin Cox from Hampshire, England
27 August 2006

Given that the last film I'd seen with the US President as a leading character was the excessively patriotic "Air Force One", I might have been more sceptical of this film which has a murder taking place within the White House itself. Perhaps not entirely beyond the realm of possibility but this old-fashioned political thriller, despite maintaining my interest until the end, doesn't offer anything too original. Having said that, it is an intriguing way to pass a couple of hours - assuming you haven't figured out the killer too early.

Wesley "Not Denzel Washington" Snipes (my girlfriend always gets them confused so that's for her benefit) plays DC Detective Harlan Regis, about to be evicted from his block of flats and assigned to investigate the murder of a young secretary within the White House. Monitored by secret service agents Nina Chance (Diane Lane) and Nick Spikings (Daniel Benzali), Regis quickly finds that the White House seem keen to cover up the whole incident while the President (Ronny Cox) struggles with a hostage crisis in North Korea. But Regis isn't about to be put off from bringing the killer to justice, even if it threatens to bring the administration down.

Snipes seems to have an uncanny ability to appear in movies that, while technically sound, rarely achieve massive popularity and "Murder At 1600" is another one of those films. An adequate script is enlivened by the performances of Snipes, Lane and Alan Alda as National Security Adviser Alvin Jordan. I did feel that more could have been made of the hostage crisis sub-plot, which never really seemed an integral part of the story. It also wasn't afraid of ploughing on with the tired cliché of the Secret Service being shadowy, self-serving and trigger happy - ground that has been covered many times before and even at the time of release. In fact, Mulder and Scully may have well been in the background, looking for aliens on the First Lawn! Having said that, this is a very old-skool cop plot even if Regis feels less like a cop and more like a paranoid fugitive.

If you like your cop films with a twist but little else in the way of excitement or originality then "Murder At 1600" will satisfy your needs. But for me personally, I never really felt engaged as a viewer. It did remind me of Denzel's foray into cop films, "Training Day", but only because I wanted to watch that instead. I sound harsh but I didn't really feel that enthusiastic about it. It passes the time well enough but that's it and to be honest, you could do something more constructive in two hours than watching a movie this anonymous. Still, at least it's not as bad as "Air Force One" - I'd rather the President was a suspect in a murder enquiry than a Rambo-type character.

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1 out of 3 people found the following review useful:

Thunder and Lightning

Author: Pamsanalyst from New Jersey
7 June 2005

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

made my dog start hyperventilating and gave her enough adrenalin to lope up the steep staircase to the bedroom, where we were watching this Wesley Snipes/Diane Lane mystery. Stroking and petting the canine helped me accept some of the implausibility of the story, and I watched it to the end.

When it seemed that the First Son was the killer, I tossed out the opinion that maybe it was the First Lady, reasoning that some clever screenwriter stole the idea from Presumed Innocent. Pam guessed Alan Alda, but I thought that there were too many cold eye characters to settle on one. It was when Ronny Cox, Alda and a bunch of military types tried to decide whether to drop a few bombs on North Korea and start a war that my focus became clear. The writers were not channeling Absolute Power, but rather Seven Days in May. Kirk, Burt and Freddie March did it better, but they didn't have this DC Detective backstory to gum up the works. You know something is wrong with the writing when the running joke about eviction goes nowhere.

Despite these problems, Snipes held my interest, the dog settled down, the rain let up and it finished in time to let me see the last three minutes of the Pistons-Heat game.

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1 out of 3 people found the following review useful:

Murder of Original Murders.

Author: tfrizzell from United States
10 March 2003

A murder of a beautiful female staffer in the White House leads to a strange and confusing case for D.C. cop Wesley Snipes and Secret Service Agent Diane Lane in this lame would-be-thriller. Naturally Lane is the only help that Snipes has and there are layers and layers of corruption within the government due to problems the nation is having in Korea. "Murder at 1600" plays more like a cable movie of the week rather than a theatrical release. The direction is never solid and the screenplay uses every Hollywood cliche you can think of. Snipes and Lane make for an attractive, but ultimately boring pair and in the end Dennis Miller's one-liners as Snipes' partner are the film's greatest assets. 2 stars out of 5.

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