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Jean-Claude Van Damme,
A renegade general (Robert Miano) plots to bomb Washington using a new top secret jet called the Storm Catcher. The only trouble is only one man (Dolph Lundgren) is capable of flying it. So they seek to put him on the run in a conspiracy that makes him appear to have murdered several men and stolen the plane. Then try to murder his wife and take his daughter prisoner. Threatening to kill his daughter if he doesn't help, he appears trapped. However, his best friend (Mystro Clark) who is the plane's computer specialist has a few tricks up his sleeve. Written by
John Sacksteder <email@example.com>
Major Jack Holloway is the pilot of a revolutionary new fighter jet that is totally invisible to all forms of radar when it goes into stealth mode. When ever someone steals the jet, they frame him for the crime and kidnap his family in order to force him to fly it (he being the only person able to). However Holloway escapes from the group and enlists the help of technical wizard Sparks Johnson to out smart the group.
I'm not a big Lundgren fan but I'll always give his movies a go when they come on TV as I tend to hope that they will at least give me some cheap thrills as an average action movie. This film was a major disappointment in many ways. First of all the plot is not exactly clever but it hasn't been developed well enough to make it plausible, it feels like they wrote it with 8 key scenes in mind but were unable to make good links between them hence we have bad guys simply bursting into Holloway's home etc. It all feels very bitty and this also affects any excitement or tension it may have been able to have it simply doesn't flow as a film. In fact it is hardly developed at all when the climax occurs I had to wonder about the extent of the chief villain's plan, his claims were grand on a global scale but we had seen no evidence of the might he would need to pull it off, all I'd seen was a few guys who had been mostly dispatched by Holloway!
However a bad plot and poor development could easily describe many average action movie filling up the late night TV schedules, but this one has other flaws. The direction is indicative of the whole film rushed, untidy and uncaring. The camera swings around wildly, but not like is the fashion with NYPD Blue or H:LOTS but really wildly so that the mildest scenes are supposed to feel exciting and frantic they don't. The production values feel cheap with few special effects and al aerial stuff clearly stock footage. The most laughable thing (spotted as well by another reviewer) was when the unit came for Holloway's family and burst through his windows you could see the fake silencers on the toy guns bending all over the place! This is one example but it was full of cheap touches that gave me the overall impression that they just wanted to get the film finished and damn the quality.
The acting is poor at best. Lundgren is poor as he clearly has no character and has been given no direction and is thus not involved with his character. Therefore he seems relaxed in the plane (despite the seriousness of the situation on the ground) and also doesn't even convince when cheering his daughter on at a football game. Only in the fight scenes (of which there are few) does he seem to be trying and even then it's temporary. Clark is a typical `comedy black sidekick' and just exactly what he has seen done in other films before and just mugs his way through. Bax is annoyingly wooden as Holloway's wife and has a grating cut glass English accent which I can only assume the casting crew thought would `add colour' to the film. Miano is a really poor villain and never gets even to the standard of average thrillers. His character has no teeth and I never really saw his plan as realistic or something that couldn't be easily overcome his failure to be a threat really knocked whatever small amount of interest I still had out of me.
Overall even people who look forward to the next Lundgren film will be disappointed with this. In every area it feels cheap and rushed it is a product rather than a film. I had to wonder why I was bothering to watch this when it was so clear that everyone involved had put so little effort into this. Poor even by Lundgren's low standards.
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