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Conspiracy (Sous-titres français)
Val Kilmer stars with Jennifer Esposito and Gary Cole in this explosive, action-packed film about a former Special Operations United States Marine who brings justice to a small border town. After he's wounded during combat in Iraq, MacPherson (Kilmer) reluctantly agrees to join a fellow soldier at his Arizona ranch. But when MacPherson arrives, his friend has mysteriously disappeared and no one will admit to knowing him. When he discovers that a corporate entity is running illegal aliens out of town by any means possible, MacPherson decides to get revenge and won't stop until everyone involved has been punished for their crimes.
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Anyway, to make a long story short. MacPherson is arrested, "washed down" (a la First Blood) and then the fun begins when the deputies assault him in his cell later that night. He of course escapes, kicking their butts in the process and then leads the bumbling red-necks on a car chase (he's in one of the deputies cars) which ends with him being shot over a small cliff. Oh, by the way, he suffers PTSD, which in a way, helps him survive and escape.
Well, of course he survives (we later learn he was wearing the body armor of one of the deputies) to be rescued and put up in a small Mexican village by Joanna (Jennifer Esposito - Crash, Related, Samantha Who?) who has been taken care of by the evil Mr. Rhodes. She wants MacPherson to bring down Rhodes. After telling her he's not the man to do it, she shows him the video tape of his friend and families murder.
After that, it's Hell on Earth for Rhodes and all his flunkies. Which concludes in an ambush, sniping and expertly aimed gunfire from semi-auto pistols by MacPherson with the help of one of the deputies (the one who shot him over the cliff) who just happened to be the brother of Joanna.
Very predictable plot after the first 15 minutes. But still an enjoyable kick-butt movie. Don't take this movie seriously. Yes, there's a message about Red-Neck racism, Illegal Aliens, The Minutemen, and the Halliburton Corp. But hey, it's a movie, and whether you take offense to it or agree with its politicized message, don't let it spoil your enjoying this film.
Well this really isn't much of an action film--it starts slowly and then--well kinda stays slow because Val Kilmer just isn't an action hero anyhow. The best we get is some closeups of his face changing emotion as he somehow transforms from a PTSD wracked vet going nowhere, to a man with a mission again--to figure out what happened to his friend--and then, to pay back a debt of gratitude to him. Gary Cole plays the villain "Rhodes". Greg Serano plays "Miguel", Kilmer's wartime buddy. Jennifer Esposito plays the romantic interest. The music isn't too bad. If you watch this with zero expectations, it's not too bad a film...
Conspiracy is another action movie that I have never heard of before. The premise is interesting and Val Kilmer and Gary Cole do their best, but there are numerous plot holes. The Marine jargon is incorrect and the supporting cast is horrible. New Lago looks like it came out of the 1800s. The town looked more like a tourist attraction than a realistic small town. I don't care much for Val Kilmer, but he does a decent job with what little he had to work with. Gary Cole is the best part of the film as the corrupted villain. In the end, I did find Conspiracy to be somewhat entertaining with a few decent action scenes.
The script was bad!
The direction was so bad! (low budget)
It is disappointing to know that some big actors such as Val Kilmer would agree to act in such movies.
The only thing that this movie got away with is that it somehow was able to not get you bored while watching it. I think its the action that kept us watching till it ended.
The story: ex-Marine, war veteran, and amputee "Spooky" MacPherson (Kilmer) is haunted by memories of the warzone even as he tries to build himself a life back home. At the urging of fellow vet Miguel Silva (Greg Serano, "Wildfire"), he heads down to New Mexico to work on Silva's ranch, but upon arriving, he finds only a growing border town run by the powerful businessman Rhodes (Gary Cole, Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby) and no trace of his friend. Upon his investigation, simple intimidation tactics by the corrupt town officials turn into a full-blown war on MacPherson as he comes closer and closer to realizing both the fate of his friend and Rhodes' conspiracy against immigrant workers.
I've heard this film compared to a similar movie about a handicapped war veteran of which I can't remember the name, but I personally find it more akin the Dolph Lundgren's DTV film Missionary Man, which was released a year earlier and dealt with similar issues: both movies feature a lone hero riding into a remote town to see a friend and uncovering widespread of oppression at the hands of an evil businessman aided by ruthless mercenaries. The biggest difference, however, is that in comparing Dolph Lundgren to the award-winning Val Kilmer, Lundgren gives the better dramatic performance. Kilmer really isn't in good shape: he's put on some weight since Deja Vu and doesn't look nearly as dashing as he once did; worse yet, his actual performance could've been done just as well with two photographs of him displaying expressions of furrowed constipation and open-mouthed daydreaming. The rest of the cast remains a mixed bag: Gary Cole outshines just about everyone as the two-dimensional bad guy that you love to hate, and female asset Jennifer Esposito ("Samantha Who?") starts off decent before descending dramatically when her character has to become hysterical. Greg Serano makes the most of his limited screentime, as does unlikely hero Jay Jablonski (Everybody Wants to Be Italian), but the rest of the cast consists mainly of no-name actors playing racist rednecks and that you want to see less of.
Regardless, since this is an action film, there should be some good stuff on that account to keep the picture afloat, right? Well, not really: the action doesn't really pick up until you're halfway into the movie, and once it gets there, it can largely be summed up in three circumstances: MacPhearson's Rambo-style escape from prison which turns into a meh-level car chase, a one-sided shootout, and then the climatic shootout/brawl at the end of the movie. While the escape features at least one innovative move in MacPhearson leaping against a car door to crush an attacker and the final fight is a decently-balanced encounter, there's not nearly enough exhilarating moments like these throughout to keep the average audience interested, making us need to fall back on the story. Personally, I don't mind seeing the plight of immigrant workers examined in their favor, but this film is sure to alienate many people for its thoroughly simplified and overdramatized approach to the whole immigration situation. Throw in the plot point of MacPhearson's inconvenient blackout spots never really leading to anything, and you've got a story that seems perfectly muddled.
In short, "Conspiracy" is a bottom-of-the-barrel piece as far as Kilmer's career is concerned, a lackluster action flick, and an unconvincing propaganda movie: not nearly a must-buy.
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