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William H. Macy
Two trains crash somewhere in Russia, one carrying a nuclear payload. A nuclear explosion follows the crash and the world is on alert... However, White House nuclear expert Dr. Julia Kelly doesn't think it was an accident... Special Operations Intelligence Officer Colonel Thomas Devoe doesn't think so either... Together they must unravel a conspiracy that goes from Europe to New York, to stop a terrorist who has no demands... Written by
M. Belanger <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Terrorist films abound these days, as though putting stories about terrorists who make mistakes is supposed to make us all feel more safe. This taut, well-written and finely acted espionage film is different that those currently in front of us: made in 1997 this film in retrospect had a better grip on just how frightening terrorism is and how two-sided the implications of danger usually are.
Filmed with never let your guard down suspense, the story is rather simple: nuclear weapons are circulating with one headed to the US and the military joins with science in tracking the carrier of the bomb. George Clooney is in fine form as Lt. Col. Thomas Devoe, professional yet charismatic and his scientific colleague is Dr. Julia Kelly, with Nicole Kidman delivering a polished performance. And for once we get to see a terrorist as a person: Dusan Gavrich (Marcel Iures), despite his mission to destroy us, is a vulnerable, bruised human being. The supporting roles are well handled by such strong character actors as Armin Mueller-Stahl.
Cinematographer Dietrich Lohmann keeps the action lively with multi-angled shots and surveillance scenes and the tension is well maintained with the music score by Hans Zimmer. But in the final analysis the credit for the success of this film lies in the capable hands of Mimi Leder. A terrific little suspense film. Grady Harp
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