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Harry Connick Jr.
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American pharmaceutical executive Walter Richmond takes a business trip to Amsterdam, accompanied by his wife Cathryn and their 10-year-old daughter Melissa, who has been mute ever since an accident some time ago. To communicate, Melissa uses a small magic marker board that she wears around her neck. Melissa makes a trip to the ladies' room at the hotel De L'Europe and gets separated from her parents. Melissa wanders out of the hotel and onto the street, where she witnesses the murder of Simon Van Der Molen, the attorney representing Walter's Dutch client. Unfortunately, Melissa is spotted by the killers, who are hit man Bruno Decker and his employer Rudolph Hartman, who turns out to be Walter's client. Hartman had Van Der Molen killed to prevent Van Der Molen from revealing the side effects of Hartman's new medication, which he's marketing to Walter's firm. If Van Der Molen would have told Walter about the side effects, Walter would have declined the medication, and Hartman would ... Written by
In the first 20 minutes of this flick I began to wonder if there was an Amsterdam in the U.S. Not one major or minor role in this movie had a Dutch accent. This distracted me from enjoying an otherwise interesting story set in one of Europe's oldest cities.
Distraction then led to befuddlement. The Script writer seemed fixated on Amsterdam's reputation as a purveyor of child porn and pedophilia. There was more than a couple of instants were characters made reference to their own awful proclivity.
Add to that gruesome and astonishingly gratuitous scenes of violence which were oddly incongruous (ie. the ambulance wheel rolling over a para-medic's head mashing it like an over-ripe pumpkin.)
But most of all. I could not believe Oscar-winner, William Hurt or even Jennifer Tilly and Dennis Leary could associate themselves with this strange and uneven film.
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