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Reviews & Ratings for
Firewall More at IMDbPro »

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Index 306 reviews in total 

It all seems the same

Author: paulfpb from Australia
12 February 2007

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Being a rainy day decided to watch a few movies, a couple of movies later Firewall was on. The first thing that struck me that Harrison Ford is just to old for the part. A Father of young children and hi tech computer technician and knew more than anyone. He looked over 60 and I then I knew it was going to be like Patriot Games, The Fugitive and Air Force One.

Paul Bettany played a good villain and being an English character was able to have subtle nastiness. The character Vince just did not seem fit into what should of been a team of bank robbers. He was an oaf, and was out of depth in the gang

When Ford's new boss was almost run over and next we see Ford at home, the Police should of arrived. The fight at the end was all to similar.

I was entertained and I saw all of the movie

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another Harrison Ford Misfire

Author: Jay Harris ( from United States
10 February 2007

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Why, Oh Why, do writers & directors always use the same plot & story line over & over again/. The Director Richard Loncraine & writer Joe Forte basically use the same plot devices & story gimmicks that have been used in many films over the years. Think THE Desperate HOURS & HOSTAGE for 2 examples,

This time we have Harrison Ford looking every bit of his age playing another executive whose family is held hostage, so that the bank he works for can be robbed. HOW MANY times have we seen this before.

The chief villain in this is the Excellent actor PAUL BETTANY. He is the best thing in the movie. The usually reliable Virginia Madsen plays Fords wife & mother of his 2 children (one is a young boy with Allergies (have we seen this also many times)

Also in the cast are Alan Arkin,Robert Patrick & Robert Forster doing there usual.

The acting & production credits are what you would expect..

It is filmed in the Seattle area, so the scenery is very attractive & the house he lives in is high up on a cliff.

There are many scenes in the rain, as per the production notes, it was very dry when they filmed the move, So the borrowed Fire Dept. water trucks for the rainy scenes..

Note my fair 2 1/2 star rating is at the bottom of the grade,.

Rating **1/2 (out of 4) 66 points (out of 100) IMDb 6 )out of 10)

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Watchable but not "24"

Author: Galina from Virginia, USA
7 February 2007

More than anything "Firewall" (2006) directed by Richard Loncraine reminds the super popular TV action show "24" with the main character named Jack (Harrison Ford) who runs against the time to save his family from a gang of dangerous computer-literate bank-robbers and their leader Bill Cox (Paul Bettany). Cox is the mastermind behind a simple but effective plan that involves transfer of $100 million from Jack's bank to his bank accounts in Caymans by forcing Jack to hack the very security system he had created for the bank while keeping Jack's wife and two children as hostages. The only person who may help Jack is his assistant Janet Stone (Mary Lynn Rajskub, basically repeating the part of Chloe O'Brian of "24"). If you forget that Harrison is 63 and it is sometimes painful to watch him in the action scenes, you may actually enjoy the movie. I like Paul Bettany as a polite, charming sociopath. For one second, just for one it seemed to me that the movie might dwell in the "Funny Games" territory but it was back soon to the familiar turf to play its own funny games.


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thumbs up

Author: kai ringler from United States
4 February 2007

well where do i start, i thoroughly enjoyed this one, harrison ford , continues to amaze me with age, he is like clint eastwood in a way, gets better with age, just like fine wine. anyway about the movie..this movie presents a slightly different approach on how to rob a bank, very interesting,, with this day and age of computers, and firewall's, i though the bad guy in the movie was an excellent choice, he comes off as the perfect villain,, i think the only thing i really didn't care for int he movie , was when the bad guy let's the boy eat something that he's allergic to,,, and the boy almost dies,, but other than that,, i thought the movie was very well written directed, and acted,, virginia madsen, who i am a very big gfan off,,, did a remarkable job int his movie, she played very well off of harisson ford, altogether i found this movie very exciting, and very hard to press pause on, this movie used a lot of the 21st century hi -tech stuff, that is very interesting to think about, like the gps located on the dog's neck,, hmmm maybe i should get one for my two mutts.. excellent movie,, worth paying the 19.99 would definitely watch again,, the special features was also very interesting to watch as well

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Author: Christopher T. Chase ( from Arlington, VA.
4 February 2007

Harrison Ford has always been and is still today, one of our most durable and dependable actors. I mean, who doesn't love the guy? He's been Han Solo, Indiana Jones, Jack Ryan and even managed to make people forget that David Janssen ever played Dr. Richard Kimble.

So it really pains me to say that watching FIREWALL, his latest film, I was left open-mouthed...because I was yawning.

Yes, even past sixty, the man's still got it...or at least a lot more of it than people give him credit for. Yes, he can still do the action hero stuff for the most part. But if he had to do a movie just to prove that to himself, or to us, did it have to be something that plays like a "Greatest Hits Collection" of his best moments, from the past decade or so of his other movies? He deserved better, this cast deserved better, but most of all WE deserved better. As the IT security chief of a large bank and a doting family man (surprise, surprise), Ford plays Jack Stanfield like a Jack Ryan clone without the government security clearance. As his wife, Virginia Madsen also proves that she is an actress who needs to be working a whole lot more, and I don't mean lending support in a piece of crap like this.

Robert Forster, Alan Arkin and Robert Patrick are in it mostly to pump up the marquee value, but the biggest shock of all is seeing Mary Lynn Rajskub as Janet, Jack's steadfast executive secretary, who is there, of course, to pull Jack's fat out of the fire in the third act. How's THAT for lazy writing and casting? Every time she said his name, the next shot I expected to see was a close-up of Kiefer Sutherland's intense face, not Harrison Ford's. And that was the biggest gaffe of all. Every time you see them together, it takes you right out of the movie.

As for Paul Bettany? Well, at least now he can say he's done the "Alan-Rickman-in-DIE-HARD" kind of thing, so he can move on to better and more complex roles.

To sum it up, I have seen a lot more poorly made, technically deficient movies than FIREWALL. A LOT. But some of those were three times more entertaining than this one.

I never thought I'd be able to say that Harrison would make a film that makes "Hollywood Homicide" seem like a contemporary classic. But now I can.

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Author: Scarecrow-88 from United States
3 February 2007

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Computer Bank Security man Harrison Ford is stuck in an unfortunate decision as his company is about to merge with another whose boss is Robert Patrick. That unfortunate situation is a group of thuggish criminals whose leader is Paul Bettany who holds Ford's family(including wife Virginia Madsen)hostage forcing him to encrypt moneys from his bank's wealthiest clients into a Caymen account or else suffer the consequences. Ford will have to find a way to match wits with Bettany and this film shows the cat and mouse game that ensues.

Pedestrian, by-the-numbers thriller is about a predictable as they come following right in line with the same types of thrillers Hollywood churns out add nauseum. The cast doesn't have a chance to freshen not-very-ripe material. The uninspired story which tries hard to be slick, but comes off as improbable asking us to believe that Ford could be able to successfully do what he does. Madsen tries to bring life to the typical mother role she's saddled with and Ford tries to muster of his old mojo, but this film is just too ordinary. Bettany just passes time as his talent is squandered on a second-rate villain. Disappointing, unfullfilling thriller.

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Great movie idea ruined by poor editing

Author: mcgriswald from Tampa
1 February 2007

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Firewall had the makings of a great movie, unfortunately screen time that should have been devoted to the technical aspects of the film were replaced by scenes that could appear in any stock action flick.

The opening credits hint at an ongoing scheme to both steal Ford's character's identity and find out all the details of his life. We're shown snippets of spy camera shots of Ford at work, documents that he has shredded being re-assembled, etc. That the "normal" means of identity theft would work against a guy whose entire career is built around maintaining the security and integrity of sensitive information seems implausible.

The criminals who take over Ford's house show up with all sorts of high-tech equipment, but other than survelling Ford at work, they don't really do much of anything with it, and when they blackmail Ford into providing them with secure info from the bank, they don't seem to have a plan as to how to use it. Despite hints at breaking through the bank's security by disabling the "firewall" of the title, the money is ultimately gotten by stealing account numbers then doing a routine wire transfer.

Instead of spending any time on the nuts and bolts of breaking through the system a la Sneakers, Hackers or any of the similar films about breaking into a secured system, we are treated with scene after scene showing us what brutal homicidal thugs these guys are. Its a routine set-up that prepares us emotionally for the satisfying climactic scene where the criminals meet their deserved end. When the end comes and the head bad guy gets his comeuppance with a pickaxe "Hills have Eyes" style, it left me shaking my head at all the loose ends that were never tied up as the credits roll.

For example, Ford is supposedly set up to take the fall for the bank heist, yet the bad boys inexplicably decide to kill him. They leave a message from his wife on another character's answering machine (who the hell uses a tape answering machine anymore?) that makes it appear that the wife is having an affair with that person. They shoot the guy with Ford's gun to make it appear that Ford has killed the man in a fit of jealous rage, but then why kill Ford's character? The criminals are supposedly technical masterminds, yet despite their attempts at covering their tracks, they leave behind clue after clue, dead bodies, bloodstains, fingerprints, etc., that would scream at the most ham-fisted investigator that funny business is afoot.

A shame that an otherwise promising premise is ultimately sabotaged into a routine action flick.

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Author: Derek Rushlow from United States
29 January 2007

Harrison Ford, Paul Bettany, Alan Arkin, Robert Forster, and other talented actors and actresses star in this fun, action-packed (if not predictable) thriller about a security expert who is forced into robbing his own bank.

Ford plays the security expert, and Bettany plays the main bad guy who kidnaps Ford's family and forces him to rob the bank. That's really the story in this thriller, but it's so much fun that you forget about its shortcomings and total predictability. A few of Bettany's henchmen seem to be a little on the "polite" side, which is also kind of strange. Arkin plays Ford's boss, and Forster is his co-worker/friend.

Story is set in Seattle, but filmed almost entirely in Canada. Virginia Madsen and Robert Patrick co-star.

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Ford in Another Implausible Much-Older-Father-Saves-His-Much-Younger-Family-Flick...(yawn...)

Author: j_graves68 from Orange County, CA
25 January 2007

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Harrison Ford started out with a great career playing charismatic characters such as Han Solo, Indiana Jones and Rick Deckard, but then in the nineties his roles transposed into sluggish caricatures with forgettable films like "Regarding Henry," "Patriot Games" and "Clear and Present Danger," the re-make of 1941's "Sabrina," "The Devil's Own," "Air Force One." "Six Days and Seven Nights," and the abysmal "Hollywood Homicide" were Ford's attempts at humor (which he has mediocre comic timing). "Firewall" is Ford's first film since the box office flop "Hollywood Homicide" (which a younger actor should have been cast for his role, by the way) and it ain't much better. All of the actors do a decent job if one wants to compare them to "Lifetime"-channel actors. The film-making is acceptable but nothing special, and most of all this film is not at all original in terms of its premise. There have been a slew of films beforehand about the innocent, attractive, affluent family in which the father is always a banking officer/executive that happen get taken hostage by some thugs for in exchange for acquiring money through that same bank. 1990's "Desperate Hours" comes to mind the more I reflect and write about this film.

Paul Bettany (who has a Stingesque quality about him) is one of the film's biggest assets and I have never seen him do a poor job in each film that he's been in since 2001's "A Beautiful Mind." Robert Patrick (who has not aged well since his breakthrough role as the T-1000 in "Terminator 2") plays Ford's nemesis at his job as a prestigious bank security director, and Mary Lynn Rasjakub from "24" reprises her role from that very same show onto the big screen, crossing over as his secretary. Harrison is married to attractive Virginia Madsen who looks about twenty years younger than him, and his children are old enough to be his grandchildren in real life. A handful of leading actors have this problem in which they cannot (or will not) play men their own age (Michael Douglas and Nick Nolte are a few dark horses that come to mind), and Ford is becoming one of them likewise. He should take a risk and play someone over-the-hill or maybe not in the limelight but a co-star, or maybe a "grandfather" for once. But perhaps he does not have the range and he still thinks that he is forty; he is usually the same character in every movie he's in and he acts as if he had too much to drink or took one too many Quaaludes.

There are little surprises to this film- maybe instead they are progressive "upgrades" when you compare it to other inside-bank heist films. What working element in a film that came out back then is somehow borrowed and improved and then regurgitated back into this one. And it was all of these upgrades that made me continue to watch this film to its entirety (and also the fact that Ford was one of my favorite actors once upon a time). One thing I could never buy though was how computer-savvy Ford was in this film: I have always thought of him as an analog-type man, a meat-and-potatoes-type, so that was always an annoying obstacle. But I did I like how Bettany always kept control over things and those in that which he could not, and his cunningness after almost killing Ford's son with saying at him, "Are you all right there, big fella?" But my real question in this would be in the story's aftermath: how would Ford and his family get off free with the cops when all of the bad guys are killed (no material witnesses)? Virginia Madsen's voice was still on Forester's answering machine's tape. And Robert Forester had been killed with Ford's gun. If there are no bad guys around, are the cops just supposed to take Harrison and his family's word that they didn't commit any crimes and that the blood on their hands is really the villains' instead? The bad guys all wore gloves so there were no fingerprints, so no forcible entry could be detected. If I didn't know what happened to Ford's family, saw that there was a breach in the network at the bank, saw that there was a body at Ford's house ("Liam," or Nikolai what's-his-face), saw Robert Forester's body that was shot by Ford's gun, I would believe that Ford was the perp, too. And that is exactly how the villains orchestrated framing Ford, or actually, the writers of this film. Only did they not realize that they had written themselves into a gaping hole. Janet (Rasjakub) had only witnessed one side of the equation with Ford, and she magically took his side after he had fired her that same day from the bank. A lot of movies assume that we accept the fact that any mayhem will be arbitrarily dismissed by the authorities if there are no living villains left. That just means less mess to clean up, right?. And so it goes… "Firewall" was not a good film. Watch this movie when there is nothing else to watch on cable and you have about an-hour-and-a-half to kill. Or maybe less.

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Incredibly Inadequate

Author: Kris Earle from Boston, MA
23 January 2007

Harrison Ford painfully goes out of his way to be clumsy and a non-action hero throughout all but the last 5 minutes of the movie. But then he's President Ford again, dropping bad guys and saving families! Wine girl does a good job in annoying the boy kidnappers and looking like the most unmatronly Mom in any Hollywood movie of late. Paul Bettany the "bad" guy mopes about and looks like an slightly updated Anthony Michael-Hall on steroids the whole time and gives the family a series of empty threats and vicious looks. Most miscast though is the young and aloof secretary, a "Tess Trueheart," who looks like someone peed in her cornflakes in almost every scene she's in. The bank is so insecure that the bad guys slip in and out unnoticed and PC anywhere appears to work without even an installation. I don't get why the bad guys need Ford other than to act frantic and have him rescue his family for the last 80 minutes of the movie. Go rent "Blade Runner" or "Master and Commander" or even "Sideways" for better films starring the three leads. Or get drunk on wine or beer and shut the TV off after "Firewall's" opening credits and you're in for a better night. Dare I say, the worst Ford movie ever made. An F. 1 star. 4 out of 10.

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