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Overall Rating

Awesome: 1.25%
Worth A Look: 12.5%
Average: 16.25%
Pretty Bad: 31.25%
Total Crap38.75%

9 reviews, 26 user ratings

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by William Goss

"Talk About A Hack Job"
2 stars

After a three-year absence, some suit had the bright idea to dust off Harrison Ford and place him in the ‘insert generic hero here’ slot of 'Firewall,' a relentless rehash of countless other action-thrillers that neglects to thrill, surprise, or even convince the audience to do little more than roll their eyes while yawning. Insert snarky review here.

This time around, good old Ford plays Jack Stanfield, a bank security advisor who is married with children (the wife being Virginia Madsen and the children being – let’s face it – victims). As it turns out, one Bill Cox (Paul Bettany) wants $100 million out of Jack’s bank, so he and his flukies kidnap said family until Jack does what he’s told. Of course, this isn’t just any bank security advisor; this is Harrison Ford, bank security advisor, who eventually decides that he’s nobody’s bitch, manages to turn the tables, decides to save his family and so on and so forth.

The film begins with a plodding and predictable first half, complete with glaringly telegraphed plot devices, and then literally shifts its tone overnight into that of an increasingly silly chase. While the first hour is drawn out by laborious exposition, the last hour tends to abandon chunks of plot and logic in an effort to reach its rather limp finale. Director Richard Loncraine (of Wimbledon fame) also manages to include a few scenes of frantic keyboard assaulting throughout the weak action sequences, in a lazy effort to justify the title’s suggestively technological connotation.

Despite attempting to resurrect his action career, Ford’s age of sixty-three years is painfully evident, as arthritis threatens to hinder his brawling technique at any moment. Ford instead spends so much time barking and growling that one could easily believe his salary was paid in Milk-Bones, leaving the pouting presence of Bettany on the other end of the spectrum, where his behavior registers as the faintest degree of intimidation. Madsen and the kids are restricted to one note a piece as they play nothing more than victims, enduring the briefest of bullying before the film jumps back to Jack. Mary Lynn Rajskub tries her very best to escape her "24" role as his secretary, Robert Patrick sticks his nose in when convenient as the bank’s incoming security liaison, and Alan Arkin and Robert Forster simply sit in the corner, collecting much-needed paychecks as ‘those old white men in charge of everything.’

Addressing one of his henchmen, Bettany’s character informs him that “you are really beginning to bore me.” It’s refreshing to see the filmmakers have such sympathy for the audience, because their borderline incompetence in nearly every other department ensures that 'Firewall' fails, even on the most basic level of escapist entertainment.

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originally posted: 02/13/06 21:14:36
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User Comments

7/15/09 R.W. Welch Formulaic hostage flick has little spark. A skipper. 2 stars
8/12/08 Shaun Wallner Loved it Harrison Ford is great! 5 stars
6/03/08 mike somewhat interesting. I felt like I've seen too many movies like this though 3 stars
5/04/08 Jack Sommersby Ridiculous, lame, and boring to boot, this so-called thriller is a D.O.A. 2 stars
4/30/08 mr.mike Far-fetched , but scores with tense atmosphere and action 4 stars
10/07/07 Meggo This was complete crap. Horrible. Doesn't deserve 1 star. 1 stars
8/21/07 Matt An old story dressed up in 21st century technology, but it's worth half a look. 3 stars
6/09/07 Steve Newman It was OK - Ford looks a very old man now, retire the poor bastard 3 stars
12/05/06 gRant KadE the movie was nice...more on prvacy event, their lots of new gadgets like GPS .. 3 stars
10/02/06 Chris Simpson Dire. A very bad rental. Clapped out Harrison does the haggard, care-worn good guy routine. 1 stars
9/19/06 Aldo Its not orginal but i found it Highly entertaining 4 stars
9/17/06 hector its worth a look not so bad as everybody rated it , its good 4 stars
7/31/06 CarolJude Haven't I seen this one before about 10 times? 2 stars
7/31/06 JeromeBosch WOW! Harrison Ford playing Harrison Ford! Unreal!!! 1 stars
6/09/06 Shukara Griffin I feel like they were trying to push a bit much.This is the same style of film . 3 stars
6/05/06 Jeff Anderson Weak & extremely witless(even for the commanding Ford). A sad waste of Madsen's talents! 1 stars
6/03/06 Rowsdower I yawned thirty seven times during this garbage. 1 stars
4/01/06 tc Not about firewalls, not a computer thriller, just a cliched kidnap movie 3 stars
3/11/06 Josh Standlee Fuck this!!! Bill Cox is the worst villain EVER! Fuck!!! 1 stars
3/02/06 Adam Even though I knew that this is going to be a boring shit, I stil went to see Mr. Ford. 1 stars
2/15/06 Mike V I'm pretty sure Harrison Fors has made this movie 3 or four times. 2 stars
2/14/06 Corinne I actually enjoyed this movie. It wasn't oscar-worthy, but it wasn't crap either. :) 3 stars
2/14/06 Ole Man Bourbon Another tedious, tiresome hostage movie. Ford needs something better to do. 2 stars
2/12/06 Fran Totally agree with Scott 2 stars
2/12/06 Perry Mason Much better than I thought it would be. Harrison still kicks ass. 4 stars
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  10-Feb-2006 (PG-13)
  DVD: 06-Jun-2006



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