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Jackal (Widescreen) [Import]
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The Jackal - Dts
The best way to enjoy this 1997 thriller is to forget the much better film that inspired it (1973's The Day of the Jackal) and get whatever kicks you can from this heavy-metal remake. It's not bad as hokey thrillers go, but all of the original film's suspenseful finesse has been traded in (not traded up) for bigger, bolder action and nonsensical plotting. It's as if Hollywood had forgotten to create excitement without resorting to overblown action and heavy hardware, but there's ample compensation in the casting of Bruce Willis and Richard Gere. Willis is the elusive assassin known only as the Jackal, whose latest target (he uses a cannon-sized gun that's anything but inconspicuous) may be the first lady of the United States. Gere plays a former IRA terrorist who is recruited by the deputy head of the FBI (Sidney Poitier) to trace the Jackal's maneuvers, and Diane Venora offers some gutsy support as a Russian-born agent who assists Gere on his mission. The movie has fun turning Willis into a master of disguise, and Gere adds much-needed gravity to counter the plot's escalating absurdity, but this is the kind of film that falls apart if you think about it too much. --Jeff Shannon
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Note: Jack Black makes an appearance in this movie. This is one of the first movies I remember seeing him in. I won't give away what happens to him, but it definitely left an imprint in my mind.
This may be the best Willis performance ever. The movie is violent, yet, it is to an extreme, not gorey violence but it reflects the violent nature of the legend. Richard Gere is cast well, a little less believable than Willis, yet he does a good job of being intense in tracking Carlos the Jackal. The issue here is what will Jackal do next? Can he be stoppped?
Jack Black plays a very believable role of a somewhat bystander who meets a very violent end. You may want to close your eyes for that one.
I recommend not drinking any caffiene before this movie because it creates an edge right from the beginning. What was telling to me was that every interaction that Willis has creates tension, whether or not he is violent, you feel he may be at any time.
This movie of course is not for everyone yet it is not an action thriller that is silly in nature with gratuitous violence. It seems more of a lesson of the violent nature of the worst criminals in the world.
Gere plays Declan Mulqueen, an IRA terrorist who is in prison. He and Mathilda May were former lovers and worked with Willis, but he betrayed them. Diana Devora is a Russian intelligence officer, Valentina Koslova. She is working with Carter Preston US intelligence officer (Sidney Poitier) in taking down Russian Mafia. Only the Mafia wants to strike back and send the Jackal - Willis - on a assassination to make a statement by killing the First Lady. Devora and Poitier get Gere out of English jail, on a temporary leave, to help track down Willis. Willis is a master of disguise, so only Gere stands a chance of tracking him down before he completes his mission.
It's fast paced, yet leisurely plots Willis preparations for the kill. Well done from start to finish. Not better than the original, but just as enjoyable. Excellent soundtrack as well.
However, there are two reasons I give the film three stars instead of five. First of all, the storyline is rather weak. The film centers around one major hit that Bruce Willis is supposed to make yet the greater portion of the movie deals with his simply preparing for the hit. While action still abounds, it leaves the viewer to wonder if you will ever get to the actual job. Why he needed such a special and expensive gun is never explained. The viewer is also left to wonder what happened to the Russian criminal that hired Bruce Willis in the first place. The final reason I gave this film only three stars is Richard Gere. While I like Gere and his acting, I do have to wonder why anyone would have him play an Irishman. His accent was pathetic at best.
Most recent customer reviews
I had it on VHS but it got "used up" so to speak So I got it on DVD . I already liked to watch it about once every 6 months or so A well done movie
I enjoy... Read more
My experience was excellent. It was a pleasure to work
with LadyBumble, (seller), in order to correct old addresses,
and she ensured that I would receive the DVD. Read more
Director Michael Caton-Jones has created a good dramatic and suspense filled film with outstanding actors and a riveting, masterful plot. Read morePublished on June 4 2008 by Erika Borsos
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