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Proof of Life (Widescreen)

Meg Ryan , Russell Crowe , Taylor Hackford    R (Restricted)   DVD
3.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (123 customer reviews)
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Proof of Life (Widescreen) + Body of Lies / Une vie de mensonges (Bilingual) (Widescreen Edition)
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Product Description

Their lives are on the line. Their hearts are out on a limb. The wife of a kidnap victim and the hostage negotiator working with her navigate a brutal world of terrorism that values money over life - and find their tasks complicated by the growing awareness that they're attracted to each other.

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Customer Reviews

Most helpful customer reviews
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
Peter Bowman (David Morse) and his wife, Alice (Meg Ryan) have spent years living in third world countries. At first, Alice loved it and immersed herself in the different cultures, trying to learn the language and anything else she could about the people she was living among. But she is starting to resent their life. Peter is an engineer, building a dam in the (fictional) country of Tecala in South America. He is running into a lot of problems on the site and just doesn't have time to deal with Alice and her insecurities at that time. Their relationship is stretched to the breaking point and seems ready to snap at any moment when the unthinkable happens and Peter is kidnapped off of a busy street by a group of guerillas in broad daylight.
Panic stricken, Alice immediately turns to Peter's corporation to help and they send in Terry Thorne (Russell Crowe), an ex-soldier turned kidnap & ransom negotiator for a global firm that collects a commission for rescued hostages. Terry immediately takes charge of the situation and gives Alice hope that her husband will soon return to her. However, Terry has barely started working on the case when he is pulled. Turns out Peter's company was trying to cut costs so they cut the hostage insurance. With no means to pay Terry's exorbitant fee, Alice is left on her own. Burned out and disillusioned, Terry just wants a well-deserved break, but he cannot leave Alice to fight for her husband on her own, so he returns and takes the case for nothing.
Terry's hopes for a quick resolution are now gone because he doesn't have a corporation's money to rely upon. Instead, he has to rely on whatever cash Alice and Peter's family can raise and deal with the kidnappers on his own.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Subtelty as an Art Form Oct. 22 2002
When I initially watched Proof of Life I was a little disappointed. I thought that the romantic subplot between Russell Crowe's and Meg Ryan's characters was underdevelopped. However, when I watched it again, I realized that there was more to this movie and the romance than I saw during my first viewing. The romance and interaction between the two leads was subtle, but that lended itself to the story in ways that more obvious romantic moments would not have. Terry (Crowe) is a man that gets a lot done without wasting words. His feelings for Alice (Ryan) are obvious because the things he does not say are more important than the things he does say. Understated is the word to describe the relationship between Terry and Alice, but that does not mean it's portrayal is ineffective.
In addition to excellent performances (espeically from Crowe and the supporting actors playing Dino and Peter - sorry, I can't remember their names at the moment) the action sequences are superb, and the insight into the relatively unheard of K&R business is unique. You don't find this information in any other films.
I've heard Proof of Life referred to as "the thinking man's action movie" and I'd have to agree. It does make you think. It has subtlety down to an art form and uses subtext as a key to unlocking the relationship between Terry and Alice.
On a side note, the DVD has a really interesting director's commentary. I am generally not a fan of direcor's commentary, but this one is very insightful and gives more information on K&R and the background of the story than could ever be put in a movie. In my opinion, the Director's Commentary is one of the highlights of the DVD.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Splendid! Aug. 15 2002
I have seen this movie countless times and I expect to watch it countless times more. If you have the DVd edition then you also get a detailed commentary by the director which, in my opinion, really adds to one's understanding of the movie and why it was made. It is based on the real-life kidnap experience of a westerner in Colombia. It is a fascinating look into the life of kidnap and ransom experts. This film has something for everyone - drama, suspense, just enough action to stop it becoming a war-film, and even a little romance, or the hint of it. What I really like about this movie is that there is no sex scene. I am sure that a lot of reviewers would have condemned this film for not having one, but I commend the director for not putting one in (actually there was one made for it but due to the real life relationshop between Ryan and Russal at the time, it was thought that it was in bad taste). You don't need to have a sex scene to pander to the audience and, after all, what is so wonderful about adultery anyhow??? I'm no prude. If you want sex then go buy an XXX movie, but know that it doesn't haveto be there in a main stream movie to make it an all time great!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Intense! June 4 2002
I just had a brief comment. This is another great Russell Crowe movie, who just seems to get better (if possible) with each new flick. Crowe has to be one of the best actors currently working, in an era when we don't seem to have the same kind of great screen actors and actresses of past eras.
Rather, in recent years we seem to have artificially hyped and pumped up celluloid pseudo-greats with no real substance, and often, no real acting ability. In the midst of this it's refreshing to have at least one actor of Crowe's ability around.
Having said that, I must say I do like Meg Ryan, and she and Crowe make a great on-screen pair here, as she turns in a fine performance herself as the wife of the kidnapped engineer and dam builder.
I won't go much into the plot, as others here have already done so, except to say that the movie, once it gets going (and it gets off to a quick start) is an intense, powerful, interesting, and believeable drama from beginning to end.
All in all a fine movie. Big Steve says go see it and don't "Bogart" the popcorn.
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Most recent customer reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Not a chick flick but if you are a Crowe fan a must see
This movie is one of my favorites. I love Russel Crowe in anything and this is one of the rare occassions when he gets to have his native Australian accent so more the better. Read more
Published on April 14 2011 by Gatorlyn
3.0 out of 5 stars Russell Crowe is Impressive, but Nothing Else Is.
Writer Tony Gilroy took his inspiration for "Proof of Life" from a 1998 "Vanity Fair" article entitled "Adventures in the Ransom Trade" by William... Read more
Published on April 1 2004 by mirasreviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Proof of intellignce
"Proof of Life" is a fine little romatic thriller. Russel Crowe plays a corperate sponcered mercenary assigned to rescue kidnapped engineer David Morse. Read more
Published on Feb. 27 2004 by Vagabond77
5.0 out of 5 stars Getting the Gun Stuff Right
I've made my living since 1992 testing and evaluating guns, and writing articles for gun magazines. Gun people tend to loath most action movies, since they rarely get the technical... Read more
Published on Jan. 22 2004 by Duane Thomas
5.0 out of 5 stars The One Bad Thing
Having raved about the excellent technical detail in this movie, I suppose I should also address the one thing - though it's not a gun fact - that's "fake. Read more
Published on Jan. 22 2004 by Duane Thomas
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent movie
this is a must see movie for all russell crowe and meg ryan fans. The story line is excellent the cast is great. This is one of russell crowe's best movie. Read more
Published on Dec 2 2003 by Bryan L. Evans
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Mix of Action and Relationships
This movie was just the perfect mix of action and romance for my entertainment tastes. Meg Ryan as Alice and her engineer husband Peter Bowman, played by David Morse, have... Read more
Published on Sept. 22 2003 by Barbara
4.0 out of 5 stars Mom Was Right
Decades ago, my mother used to say we should never know anything about a performer's personal life or opinions because that gets in the way of clear-eyed enjoyment or assessment of... Read more
Published on June 18 2003 by C. Ebeling
4.0 out of 5 stars Gripping action sequences
After several viewings I've got to say that I really enjoy watching this movie. Russel Crowe and David Caruso are great as K&R experts. Read more
Published on Dec 26 2002 by R. J. Marsella
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Action Film
Loved Ryan and Crowe in this outstanding action film. Kept me on the edge of my seat. I was especially happy to see that although Crowe and Ryan were dating at the time, they... Read more
Published on Dec 9 2002 by L. Jerome
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