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Land of the Free (1998)

A politician's campaign manager (Speakman) discovers that the candidate (Shatner) is a front for a military organization plotting a political overthrow of the government. In trying to ... See full summary »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Frank Jennings
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Aidan Carvell
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Annie Jennings
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Agent Green
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Agent Luckenbill
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Agent Thornton
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Matt McCaster (as Charlie Robinson)
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Randy Jennings
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Fitzpatrick
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Waitress (as Candy Azzara)
Bob Bragg ...
Andrews
Tony Brassfield ...
Gilman
Danny Breen ...
Bailiff
...
Leader
...
Grand Jury Foreman (as Carlos Cervantes)
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Storyline

A politician's campaign manager (Speakman) discovers that the candidate (Shatner) is a front for a military organization plotting a political overthrow of the government. In trying to expose the candidate's right-wing activities, he puts himself and his family in danger of being killed. Written by John Sacksteder <jsackste@bellsouth.net>

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One nation. Under God. Under fire. Under siege.

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Thriller

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for violence and some sexuality | See all certifications »
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13 January 2004 (Finland)  »

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User Reviews

I promise that I will review another movie from the PM Entertainment Group Incorporated!
10 August 1999 | by (New Jersey, USA) – See all my reviews

Keep in mind that just because the PM Entertainment Group made this film, it does not guarantee that this will be a high quality action picture. LAND OF THE FREE is overflowing with car crashes, explosions, shootings, paranoia, and more paranoia. On the other hand, this film lacks an intelligent script, redeeming social values, energy, and efficacy. It also does not have a shred of ingenuity either! This is one of the Pepin-Merhi duo's lamest films in years...

Imagine this: William "Captain Kirk" Shatner stars as Aidan Carvell, a militia-based terrorist who wants to be a politician representing America! He has even written a book titled "Land of the Free." Carvell has won the hearts and votes of the people across California. He has made his own proposal known as the "Free America." Little do these denizens of California realize that they are supporting a politician who is working in cahoots with the militia. Carvell has his own inner ambitions...

Aidan Carvell may be connected to a surreptitious militia organization called the "Northern Militia." Once the haughty Carvell wins the Senatorial election, he can help these guys organize a plan to take over the United States!

Martial arts expert Jeff Speakman is Frank Jennings, Mr. Aidan Carvell's campaign manager. Jennings has recently uncovered quite a ton of dirty dealings made by Mr. Carvell himself. What Jennings has discovered can jeopardize his entire family's lives.

Desperate, Jennings forces his family to enter the Witness Protection Agency for the sake of their own safety. There are only a few minor problems... One, Jennings and his family are still in the city! Two, everyone else seems to know the Jennings' aliases. Third, there is no one that they can trust! Last (and certainly the worst possible outcome), Carvell's men are hunting the Jennings down like helpless prey...

If you like watching total carnage in the name of justice, then maybe you will give LAND OF THE FREE a try. LAND OF THE FREE has plenty of mayhem as we watch cars skyrocket, and then crash and burn. LAND OF THE FREE has the opportunity to be a solid, well-written political thriller with intense action. However, torpid direction, listless performances, a lackluster script, and repetitive action sequences maul what could have been at least an interesting film.

Granted, this movie does deliver the works. There must be at least half a dozen car crashes in this movie...maybe more. The best highlight has to be a joyride on a speeding bus! I am usually always ecstatic to see car chases and the ensuing destruction. This time though, it's as if the batteries ran out of juice. These action scenes all could have been very exciting...but they are not briskly paced. The way these action sequences are directed in this movie just seem too awkward with little confident orchestration. We have also seen the same redundant car wrecks in other previous works by the PM folks. They have done so much better.

In addition, the plot holes in this movie proliferate more than the number of cars demolished. I mean, what's up with the botched assassination attempt?! Why murder an FBI agent who is barely introduced into the story? Do motorists purposely crash their own vehicles? As for these bad guys, how come when they are firing their weapons, they can never hit their target? These bad guys can shoot anything, but they cannot put a single bullet into the protagonist! With problems like these, not even the great William Shatner can save this movie from being sealed by its own fate...

Speaking of William Shatner, I was surprised that Captain Kirk has contributed more than just a small cameo. He actually appears in the WHOLE (well, most of the) movie. Shatner is the only character who actually breathes life into this lifeless project. His portrayal of a dishonest politician is sometimes absurd, but mostly amusing. One question that I have continuously pondered about is what made William Shatner want to sign up for this piece of drivel anyway(?)

LAND OF THE FREE is just a disaster waiting to happen. Besides the lackluster action and the wooden performances, this movie also suffers from a lack of cleverness. There are no surprises here, we already know who are the true despicable villains. The action scenes are dull and predictable. The musical score is constantly dreary and horribly bothersome. The cinematography is pathetic. The people behind and in front of the camera fail to handle the limited material given to them. They just could not make the best of what they have. LAND OF THE FREE is without a doubt, one of the poorest entries from the prolific PM duo. Events that do not coherently connect together plus inadequately directed action sink this whole production.

Maybe this movie is worth a laugh or too. Shatner's performance deserves a few chuckles and you will laugh often at how Speakman does not seem to take the menacing perils very seriously. This is better particularly when one is intoxicated. This way, the person will not realize what kind of agony he/she is subjecting him/herself into...

RATING: NO STARS out of ****.


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