This movie is better than its trailer.But that's not saying a lot.
A woman has been murdered at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue in Washington. That's the White House, kids. For whatever reason, a doesn't-play-by-the-rules DC cop (Wesley Snipes) gets called in. Nevermind that Secret Service or FBI or a bunch of other organizations could do the same investigation as a DC cop, and not make waves, but then, there wouldn't be a movie, would there?
The cop has a partner (Dennis Miller, slumming) but gets paired up with a Secret Service agent (Diane Lane) anyway, who just happens to be an Olympic Gold Medalist in sharpshooting and who just happens to not mind running around sewers in white tank tops. The sharpshooting part is important to the plot, the wet t-shirt isn't.
Why was the woman killed, and who was responsible? Is it the President himself (Ronny Cox)? The President's son (Tate Donovan)? Or was it that head of the Secret Service detail (Daniel Benzali) or maybe even a National Security adviser (Alan Alda)?
Well, look at the cast. The trend these days is to cast the most unlikely actor in the role of the villain, so that it comes as a shock to the viewer when the identity is revealed. Figure it out, Hawkeye.
Actually, the first half of the film isn't really that bad. Snipes' character has some certain cliched elements to him, but he's actually one of the more interesting characters, if only because he's into elaborate Civil War miniature recreations, which isn't nearly as geeky as it sounds. There's good chemistry between him and Lane, and each additional character is actually pretty fleshed out.
But the last half (or maybe third) of the film gives over to standards. Cliches abound, and the movie basically switches to autopilot, including a sequence in a tunnel that we've seen countless times before.
It's well done at times, but falls apart in the end.Diane Lane's a hottie, though.