A gunman ties up an actor and locks him in his dressing room just before a performance. He also puts a bomb with a 90-minute timer next to the actor. Then, he goes to a room above an LA plaza and draws a bead on the actor's lover, international arms dealer, Liberty Wallace. Calling himself "Joe," he calls her cell phone, demonstrates that a rifle is pointed at her, and tells her to cuff herself to a hot-dog cart nearby (the cuffs are there). Over the next 90 minutes, the story unfolds: as a result of his daughter's death, he wants a public debate on the Second Amendment. As Liberty begins to bond with Joe on the phone, he gets some truths from her - and his revenge.Written by
Kari Skogland's "Liberty Stands Still" kept reminding us of a similar film, Joel Schumacher's "Phone Booth". The clue for understanding what the director's message seems to be, is seen in the opening credits. We are shown part of the US Constitution. Ms. Skogland is preparing us for what will follow.
The only thing that doesn't make the film as suspenseful, as it could be, is the fact we know from the start who is behind the power rifle in a building overlooking the square where much of the action will take place. We don't believe, for one second, that Joe, could have prepared this caper that has placed two exploding devices in the theater, as well as in the hot dog stand. Wesley Snipes is only seen in closeups.
The other thing that doesn't make sense is to watch a cool Liberty Wallace, a woman who can die at any moment if Joe decides to put a bullet right smack in the red spot over her heart. The way Ms. Fiorentino plays this woman doesn't seem to add anything to the tense situation Ms. Skogland has prepared for us to see.
It's clear to see why this film went to video without showing in theaters, or if it did, it might have lasted a week, the most. As a video, or in cable, one is willing to take the chance. The film is not horrible, by any means, it shows a director who will do better in the future.
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