suspense DVD and movie reviews and previews from - curled up with a good dvd
suspense DVD reviews and previews from - curled up with a good dvd
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Spartan - suspense DVD review
Spartan rated R by the Motion Picture Association of America rating: 2 1/2 stars
Actors: Tia Texada, Derek Luke, Val Kilmer, Jeremie Campbell, Bob Jennings
Director: David Mamet   Studio: Warner Home Video
DVD release: 15 June 2004   Runtime: 107 minutes (1 disc)
Format: AC-3, Anamorphic, Closed-captioned, Color, Dolby, Subtitled, Widescreen, NTSC
DVD features: Subtitles (English, Spanish, French), Audio tracks (English, Dolby Digital 5.1), Commentary by Val Kilmer

Val Kilmer stars as super Secret Service agent Robert Scott in this sometimes interesting, sometimes underwhelming tale of finding the kidnapped daughter of the President of the United States. Fans of David Mamet's (House of Games, Glengarry Glen Ross) style and pacing will be used to the complex (at times convoluted) plotting. The idiosyncratic, cryptic, and unbelievable dialogue (complete with terrible, wooden delivery) will push the limits of suspended disbelief. The movie as a whole isn't a complete bust; it's just certain scenes throughout the film that make you want to scream, "What the heck is going on here?"

This obviously isn't your typical muscled-up, oiled-down action hero movie with a simple, easily followed plot. Mamet is a master craftsman. His movies don't describe the obvious. He not only glues your eyes to the screen, he forces you to think. But this time around it's mostly unrealized potential as there is never any real connection with any of the characters. Most importantly, when we finally see the president's daughter, the character who is supposed to draw all our sympathy, she turns out to be a slightly (maybe more than slightly) annoying screamer. But there are good performances by Tia Texada (Third Watch) and Ed O'Neil of Married with Children fame.

The DVD contains very little in the way of extras, just a trailer and an audio commentary by Val Kilmer. Fans of slick, big-budgeted summer blockbusters might see this as a dud, but those looking for a thinking mans' action film might find it intriguing. That is, if you can believe the President's daughter can be sold into white slavery without anyone knowing - or the even more absurd notion that he would rather let her die than bring her back because she will hurt his chances at re-election.
reviewed by Bobby Blades
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