"Fast paced, witty and packed with action. The Rock, er,... rocks."
Breaking free from the shackles of the ‘traditional’ (and might I add stale) action film formula, The Rock provides an exhilarating thrill ride from start to finish, and has to rank as one of the best action flicks in recent memory.After a crack team of disillusioned marines led by General Francis X Hummel (Ed Harris) takes over Alcatraz for the purpose of bringing justice to forgotten soldiers, the government enlists the help of jailed inmate John Mason (Sean Connery), the only man to have broken out of ‘The Rock’, in order to break in and eliminate the terrorist’s threats of a chemical strike on San Francisco. Stanley Goodspeed (Nicolas Cage), a chemical scientist, is thrown into the fray as well, and what ensues is a desperate race against the clock to save millions of lives.
Michael Bay’s 1996 box office hit has a unique mix of brilliantly choreographed actions sequences, an intriguing plot that has a twist on the usual bad-guy versus good-guy routine, and typically outstanding performances from Cage, Harris and the brilliant Sean Connery. The film’s also laced with great moments of - often bizarre – humour, with Cage and Connery in particular dishing up some real classic lines between them:
Cage: I'll do my best. Connery: You're best? Losers always wine about their best. Winners go home and fuck the prom queen! Cage: Carla was the prom queen.
There’s just something fresh about this film, and I don't mean that it's totally original or is breaking new ground. Okay, so it borrows some of the standard elements - the car chase, the gun battle, the dodging of bullets, etc. It's just that the film feels so energetic and lively though, as if the creators were really enjoying themselves.
After repeated viewings, the reason why The Rock is so great is that it's just so much damn fun to watch. It avoids the boring drudgery that seems to accompany the viewing of some other actions films, and goes for a slick, fast paced, explosive extravaganza.If you haven’t seen The Rock, and you’re an action movie fan, it definitely is essential viewing. Special mention of the DVD version: the sound and visuals through a decent home theatre system are absolutely awesome! Check it out.