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Mark L. Lester
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The President of the United States, in the midst of negative puplic opinion, is kidnapped while attending a charity function. Initially, we discover that the kidnapping was planned by his chief of staff to boost his poll ratings as the reelection is one week away. However, one of the kidnappers decides the opportunity for gain is too strong and turns it into a real kidnapping. What he didn't expect is another member of his group to foil his plan.Written by
I bought this on a double set DVD with Black Moon Rising for £2.99 here in the UK. I didn't have particularly high hopes after reading the majority of the reviews here. Nevertheless, I decided to watch it anyway and it more or less met my low expectations. I certainly didn't find it as bad as some people are making it out to be for sure. Some have labelled this as "the worst Die Hard wannabe ever", "funniest movie ever" and even "the worst movie ever". It's none of these. Go see "Blast" if you want to see the worst Die Hard clone ever. See "Disaster" or a Jim Wynorski movie if you want to see the most unintentionally funny movies ever. See "Crazy Six" if you want to see the worst movie ever. People who aren't used to "B-grade" movies probably watch it based on the familiar names in the cast and overreact. Because while by no means good, it passes fairly painlessly.
The plot, while just another take on the basic Die Hard plot, is acceptable enough for the kind of movie we're in and although it takes a while before getting onto the real kidnapping, overall it moves at a comfortable enough pace and is rarely boring.
What the biggest problem the movie is faced with is that for the majority of it there is only one villain and he makes some incredibly stupid decisions, and they both appear to have appalling shots. Most of the gunplay consisted of firing thousands of rounds of ammo and destroying background scenery rather than hitting the targets. Plus those scenes had zero suspense as he was only up against one person, so you knew neither of them were going to hit until the end. There are also certain times when both could have taken each other out and don't, and some ridiculous decisions from the villain - he decides to chase Eric Roberts character around with a flame thrower for ages and has no success. However, the action scenes and the stunts do get better as the movie progresses and there are some entertaining hand to hand action scenes, and a relatively exciting climax. There is a faked helicopter crash which looks surprisingly convincing, and some pretty explosions.
The production values in general look okay with good lighting and clean, earthly colours but there is grainy stock footage of police cars that occasionally pops up and adds absolutely nothing. There are also certain other things that make it obvious that costs have been cut such as the older cars that explode and especially old police cars that I find hard to believe would have been in use by LAPD as late as 2000, and then there's the protesters that others have pointed out.
Overall, this is a very basic Die Hard clone which moves in exactly the way you'd expect it to and really doesn't do anything new or original and has a lot of problems. However if you catch it on TV or find it for a very low price and have nothing else to do, by all means watch it. Just don't actively seek it out or get your hopes up. Certainly a watchable, inoffensive affair but nothing memorable at all.
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