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Film One Star

I expected little from Firewall as the trailers showed us another formulaic Harrison Ford normal guy fighting back against the evil forces and no doubt saving the day. We'd seen it so many times before and frankly I was bored of it.

Still, sometimes you have to watch films whether you want to or not and objectively review them, no matter how hard that is. So I did and I started off being quite surprised.

Firewall_Poster.jpgQuick thanks to Edinburgh's Ocean Terminal Vue Cinema for helping me review these films, it's a very handy cinema and well worth a visit.

The first two thirds of the film are pretty standard underneath but there is a layer of something different. Not only with the gloss and sheen of the technical level but also the feeling that something is slightly different. The idea of the family held hostage and the intricate planning of the baddies, there's hardly a hint of a weakness.

Well, of course there is, after all they have to show you a way. Yet despite that there was still a feeling that this was going to deliver something slightly different.

Then the final third kicks in with Ford driving straight into an abandoned barn at speed and magically hitting a secret stash of highly explosive material which sets the car on fire. He escapes, of course, and drops his gun in the process...

That's when every cliché in the action genre pops out and we're treated to some of the blandest and most ludicrous cinema there is. We actually laughed out loud at the very ending which becomes a parody of every action film ever.

It's surprising what a different film the first two thirds really is. The tension is built really well and what really is surprising is the technical side of the film. Despite some strange ideas, there's nothing technically wrong about it and when computer screens are shown we're treated to real screen with real commands. This is something you just about never see in films, so it's refreshing to see.

What isn't so refreshing to see is Ford's mumbling and bumbling performance which just seems overly nervous and similar to those he's played before. Virginia Madsen does well with what she's given, but she doesn't really get that much, and that's a real shame for such a good talent.

Paul Bettany on the other hand is wonderful. His character was cold and thoroughly evil. A trait he plays convincingly well. Without a doubt his role is the best in the film, casting a huge shadow over Ford.

Overall it's a poor attempt at an action film, despite the stronger first two thirds, that last third just ruined the entire film. Seriously it is that bad.

IMDB Film Details



This film is truely as aweful as it sounds.

Is it just me or does everyone else think that harrison ford has lost much of his screen presence?


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