|Written by Bill Warren|
|Wednesday, 25 March 1998|
As you might expect, dialogue is more-or-less and afterthought with such inspirational and colorful passages as, "The next wings you see will be the fly's buzzing over your rotting corpse." It gave me chills just thinking about it, although probably not in the way intended.
Given the chance to get off the plane, the totally buffed-out Cage, opts to stay on board. He needs to defend the honor of a female prison guard and, somehow in the melee, find a syringe for his buddy who desperately needs a shot of insulin. John Malkovich, as the villainous mastermind of the breakout, aims for a quiet reserve, leaving the over-the-top theatrics to Colm Meany, the overzealous DEA agent who just wants to shoot the plane out of the sky, even if our hero is on board. Of course, the other good guy, John Cusak, talks him out of it and the plane crashes on the Las Vegas Strip destroying millions of dollars in property and killing countless innocent bystanders. Maybe it wasn't a good choice, but it sure made for terrific special effects.
This is an excellent transfer to DVD and they put the 5.1 audio soundtrack to good use. I could almost feel the wind and sand against my skin when the plane lands nose first into a gravel runway early in the movie.
Implausibility and cheesy dialogue aside, when you get right down to the action, this film is a serious adrenaline rush. There are plenty of unique stunts, huge explosions and grizzly deaths to keep the die-hard action fan satiated. From a purely action standpoint, this is a worthwhile thrill-ride and therefore I give it a mild recommendation.