Reviews written by registered user
|65 reviews in total|
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
Basically what we have here is little more than a remake of the
hilarious 1970's classic kitsch horror 'Death Line' which ironically
was like this cobblers, also partly filmed at the disused Aldwych
Making good use of the now disused Jubilee Line platforms at Charing Cross as well as the aforementioned Aldwych, this film contains basically the same plot - dodgy murdering mad zombie in the tunnels preying on the lost passengers who have missed the last train - originality is not this film's strong point.
Indeed strong points are sadly lacking. The gore ranges from the poor to the unnecessarily over gory whilst the sub-Gollum nutter is never really fully explained as seems little more than an under developed plot device.
Franke Polente has little to do with a thin script than run down a lot of tunnels and scream every so often, indeed she was like pretty much everyone else in this film, out-acted by a small dog and a pack of tame rats.
If creepy films set on the London Underground are your bag, or you just want to play 'spot the tube location' them pick this up on DVD when it hits a bargain bin. If you are looking for classic horror, go and dig up a copy of Death Line (aka Raw Meat).
If you are looking for a quality well written and acted film, you will need to change trains.....
Having watched this film twice now, I cannot help but get the feeling
that the original screenplay pitched at the money men was significantly
different from the end result.
The publicity that even managed to suck a usual sceptical person such as me in had everyone believing this was chock full of endless dragons wrecking the world in general and London in particular, mainly thanks to one of the best bits of cinema poster art for years.
All the good bits however where tragically glossed over in a naff one minute monologue and we where left with some strange hybrid of Mad Max meets Dragonslayer with the cast offs from a TV Movie about Vietnam thrown in for good measure.
Health & Safety rules where set back several thousand years by the terrible opening sequence (a child on a building site is a no no for a starter but then let him crawl around subterranean earth workings all without safety equipment!?!?) I can see the production meeting where some suits said something along the lines of 'Yeah nice script but when do the American Forces arrive?' and so shoe horned in was a travelling band of burnt out marine loonies and I suspect out went any intelligence and interest this script once possessed.
There where a few good bits, notably the dragons - when they eventually bothered to make an appearance where well done. The only half decent non-hammy OTT acting performance however came from Izabella Scorupco and she was woefully underused as well as being hampered by a leaden and clichéd script.
Overall not good, it could have been so much better than this which makes Reign of Fire a major missed opportunity.
Basically what we have here is a bargain basement action thriller set
mainly on a train and utilising numerous bits of other film's scripts
(spot the photocopied plots from Under Siege 2, Death Train and
numerous others here).
Add every cliché in the book, some truly awful acting, standard issue one liners that don't work, various cardboard characters, the token eye candy and a cast that seemed to be only in this as they desperately needed the money to a budget of about ten dollars and this is the mess you wind up with.
The locomotives acted better than the cast, probably because they did not have to recite the cheesy clichéd dialogue that basically ran from start to finish, it is little wonder that one comment from an Australian (where this Antipodean codswallop was made and is set) wanted to hang his head in shame that they where producing stuff like this.
Stick to Mad Max films please.......
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
Primarily I like this movie for its comedy value, this is your typical band
of standard characters in group jeopardy disaster type movie so beloved of
the 1970's (see the various Airport films, Towering Inferno, etc for more
examples of this classic unintentional comedy' genre).
The usual slightly bored all star cast who need the cash, this time are sealed on a non-stop train with a deadly virus, a couple of dozen gun toting goons and a hundred or so extras who met various violent deaths either at the hands of the virus or other more violent means.
The reason this film is so funny is that you can sit back and relax and watch the endless errors the non stop train that manages to change locomotive mid journey, the scenery going by the wrong way outside the train windows, the same scenery going by several times on a loop, the electric locomotive that still manages to keep going when the electrical supply disappears every so often, the red kitchen car that manages to turn round and change places in the train, not to mention the final coup de grace with the extra ten or so carriages of cannon fodder extras that mysteriously appear at the front of the train just in time to be tipped over the bridge to their deaths.
The scenario is so ludicrous and the dialogue so clichéd that it makes me laugh out loud whenever I see it, not least that concept that the train is sealed yeah right and that they are all cured by the pumped air so then what do they do? Break a few windows to try and escape good one!
Still it fills in an afternoon, amazingly this rubbish has actually been released on DVD - whatever next?
With Die Hard setting the standard by which I feel all action films should
be measured, Steven Segal's Under Siege comes pretty close.
Often described (perhaps unfairly) as Die Hard on a boat' this film may not be Shakespeare but does contain plenty of non-stop action, laughs and comical bad guys.
Special mention goes to Gary Busey as the traitorous second in command but especially to the always watchable Tommy Lee Jones who manages to steal pretty much every scene he is in with his character of the former CIA agent turned nutball.
Segal's sometimes wooden acting ability thankfully is sufficiently offset by the quality and intensity of the action going on throughout the film, annoyances however include the obligatory eye candy in the form of Erika Eleniak, she was quite clearly in her element coming out of a giant birthday cake (probably the most memorable scene in the film for many!!) but that is about all.
All in all a good watch if you are looking for a nice no-brain-required action film.
It was when I read the excellent novel, my mind changed. I used to think
this was a wonderful film, when I read the book however, it was clear that
so much excellent plotline and dialogue had been missed out that the film
story was ruined. Plot lines about the Russians, spies, espionage, tracing
the history of the miners and their efforts, what happened after the Titanic
was raised but before it reached New York, all this would have made for a
more in depth and excellent adaptation, instead the producers went for the
big bucks spectacle and just concentrated on the Titanic itself which really
is only a small part of the original novel.
It would have been better being properly done as a three part mini series or similar instead of this badly edited rushed nonsense.
There are good points about the film, some of the model work for the wrecked Titanic is excellent, especially when you consider when it was made but then again considering how much they spent on it, it should have been, however the seemingly cardboard cut out super imposed on the New York skyline at the end is terrible beyond description and oddly seems to be worse in the DVD version over the VHS version.
Thankfully saving this film from sinking completely was probably one of John Barry's finest non-Bond soundtracks, without that, this really would have become unbearable.
Sadly fact (the discovery of the Titanic for real) precludes any possibility of a decent remake which with good CGI could have been spectacular.
With the overwhelming success of the first Under Siege, it was inevitable
that a sequel would be wheeled out before too long. Sure enough here it is,
Under Siege 2 Dark Territory.
Quite why they bothered with the last subtitle I do not known as it is not readily obvious within the action as to its reference but I digress.
This time the terrorists and Segal are all clumped together on a train. Basically it's a similar scenario from the first film, complete with the same Admirals, CIA boss etc from the first instalment.
The weapon of choice this time is a daft satellite weapon controlled by a nutcase and his band of hired mercenaries. The two leading bad guys do however have some wonderful much quotable lines, one in particular I cannot repeat here in print, you will just have to make your own assumption ..
Once again Segal is on his own with just an annoying sidekick/comedy relief (this time a Porter) for company and again he single handed takes on the non-descript bad guys and duly despatches them one by one as per standard procedure in an effort to stop the weapon, save the train and also save his irritating but nice to look at niece.
Sadly the quality of the seemingly recycled script is poor and Segal is hopelessly out acted by the two lead bad guys (Eric Bogosian and Everett McGill) who in turn are out acted by the two former Alaskan Railroad GP7 type locomotives hauling the train!!
Also not helping in my appreciation of this film is the fact that the UK DVD release is badly chopped about and obvious badly done cuts abound throughout. Thankfully an excellent soundtrack from Basil Poledouris saves this film from being just average.
This has got decent special effects, a well written intelligent plot, some
wonderful acting and the best bad guys in the business - our old friends the
The Borg had a bit of a makeover for their first film appearance and benefited from it, had they used the previous TV series Borg, this would have been laughed at as cheap.
Also new is the Enterprise E' which as per standard Trek, the Borg and indeed everyone else proceed to take apart and wreck. An impressive ship with an amazing and well detailed selection of sets for the interior no doubt but rather obviously one that has been specifically designed to look good on the big screen unlike its predecessor.
Once again however we do dip into that well trodden field of Data's emotions and human development, thankfully this is kept to a fair minimum. Indeed with the wonderfully put together scenes on the Earth of the past and its characters, we can forgive the scriptwriters a little bit.
Strong performances all round, notably Patrick Stewart as ever but also from pretty much everyone in the supporting cast, even the cameo by Voyager's holographic doctor!
All in all a very assimilating Trek film and probably the last decent one of the series, certainly the best of the Next Generation crew's efforts.
After the excellent First Contact, the Next Generation crew limped in with
this soul less effort. Many Star Trek fans recall that infamously awful
original series episode with the hippies; in terms of naffness this is
probably the film equivalent.
The strong performances from the previous film are missing, the script is weak and the ensemble do the best they can with a lack lustre plot whilst battling the unlikeable Sonar and a renegade Federation Admiral to protect a bunch of new age planet dwellers.
Having said that, Riker looks like he is enjoying himself when let loose to blow up the Sonar but that is one of only a very few highlights in what is otherwise a very tiring and dull entry in the Trek franchise.
Basically this film had a list of purposes put Kirk and Picard together in
the same film, explain why we had thus far never seen an Enterprise B and
get rid of Enterprise D and all of its seven year old sets so they can have
a nice shiny new ship in the next film.
This is achieved with a ludicrous set of plot devices, the silly Nexus energy ribbon thing and the mad Doctor Soran where little more than tools used to get Kirk and Picard together and finish off Enterprise D in the process.
All in all a bit flat, also the much over used Data emotions plot was recycled from the TNG series YET AGAIN resulting in some unnecessary and quite frankly embarrassingly bad scenes.
Still, they achieved their aims I suppose and the wrecking of the Enterprise D was nicely done but surely Geordi could have sorted out a little warp core breach without too much trouble?
Never mind, the TNG crew would be back with a vengeance in the next instalment
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