*** Official HOSTAGE Review Thread

Discussion in 'Movies' started by Tino, Feb 16, 2005.

  1. Tino

    Tino Executive Producer
    Supporter

    Joined:
    Apr 19, 1999
    Messages:
    10,595
    Likes Received:
    3,390
    Trophy Points:
    9,110
    Location:
    Metro NYC
    Real Name:
    Valentino
    I saw a screening of Hostage with Bruce Willis last night and was pleasantly surprised in that it turned out to be a solid, crowd pleasing action/suspense film.

    Bruce plays a former hostage negotiator with demons in his past who is forced back into that situation when another hostage situation occurs.

    Bruce is in top form here, reminiscent of his John McClane character in the Die Hard films.

    The film had elements of Die Hard, The Panic Room, The Negitiator and even Home Alone. Luckily, these work in the films favor instead of against it. It clocked in at about two hours and was consistently entertaining.

    After the film was over, I was asked to be a part of the focus group for the film. All 25 people said that it was either excellent or very good and would definitely recommend it to their friends. I have been part of focus groups before and don't recall any of those films getting unanimous approval.

    It opens in theaters March 11.

    If you are looking for a good, fun Saturday night action/suspense flick, take Hostage. [​IMG]

    [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
     
  2. Robert Crawford

    Robert Crawford Moderator
    Moderator

    Joined:
    Dec 9, 1998
    Messages:
    33,083
    Likes Received:
    8,133
    Trophy Points:
    9,110
    Location:
    Michigan
    Real Name:
    Robert
    This thread is now the Official Review Thread for "Hostage". Please post all HTF member reviews in this thread.

    Any other comments, links to other reviews, or discussion items will be deleted from this thread without warning!

    If you need to discuss those type of issues then I have designated an Official Discussion Thread.



    Crawdaddy
     
  3. Patrick Sun

    Patrick Sun Studio Mogul

    Joined:
    Jun 30, 1999
    Messages:
    38,779
    Likes Received:
    493
    Trophy Points:
    9,110
    This film feels like Die Hard flipped around, with Bruce Willis playing the cop on the outside, trying to talk a small boy through the worst night of his life as he and his dad and sister are held hostage after things go haywire, and the 3 bad guys are stuck in a messy situation.

    Motivations are reinforced, and propel the characters through a night where nothing goes right for the characters involved. There is a bit of over-emoting on Willis's part in spots, and there is some pretty so-so overwrought acting from the bad guys. But as the film makes it way through the twists and turns, it's never boring, but the ending needed a little more tweaking in my eyes.

    I give it 3 stars, or a grade of B.
     
  4. Adam_S

    Adam_S Producer

    Joined:
    Feb 8, 2001
    Messages:
    6,306
    Likes Received:
    126
    Trophy Points:
    9,110
    Real Name:
    Adam_S
    [​IMG][​IMG][​IMG]½ - just shy of perfect

    This was an outstanding suspense/thriller, the best I've seen since Collateral, and I had a stronger initial response than I did to collateral but that film grew on me the more I thought about. Hostage has a bit of problems with an overly convuluted plot and rewrites but it is brilliantly executed on every level.

    The cinematography and especially editing on this film are nothing short of outstanding. Willis gives a wonderful performance and the little boy is so damn good you never actually see him acting, he's completely transparent and just amazing. The three hostage takers are a bit stock though quite a bit of time is taken with them, they're just a hair over the emotional top from time to time.
    for example, when Mars points the gun at Willis getting Smith out of the house and says bang, this is such a false and silly moment of suspense that it's manipulative and not naturally growing out of the film's narrative

    My other big issue has to do with the cheap trick the screenwriters used to make the situation 'personal' for our hero What's the point of involving his family, he's such an uncaring ass that he doesn't give a shit about the family inside unless his family is threatened? Would Die Hard have been better if [Carl] the police officer's wife had been inside as one of the hostages so he has a personal stake in the narrative? That sort of shallowness is not consistent with the character you've taken time to already establish. This whole subplot is just really damn silly. How does kidnapping his family make him more effective as a hostage negotiator, why single out Willis? he was famous once, sorry not good enough, and even when you blackmail him into recklessly taking over the situation you then don't trust him and send in your own snatch and grab crew to override him even more recklessly than he's been? And the purpose of all this sideplot burned anyway. and we have the silly (but effective) denoument blood bath to tie up these plot threads it just messes up an otherwise tensely drawn film.


    But all that matters very little because the film is so incredibly well accomplished on every level that you don't really care to much about the silliness of getting Bruce Willis to Big Action Hero scene (which is probably his least effective moments in the film).

    Adam
     
  5. Dave Hackman

    Dave Hackman Stunt Coordinator

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2000
    Messages:
    173
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Your mind is the real hostage

    Former lead Negotiator Jeff Talley (Bruce Willis) leaves the city for a suburban chief of police job that seems mundane until a call comes in requesting backup at a home who’s alarm system recently reported a security breach. Inside are a young boy Tommy Smith (Jimmy Bennett) and his sister Jennifer (Michelle Horn) and their wealthy father Walter (Kevin Pollak) held at gunpoint by members of the wildly popular band Hanson. Boyish good looks aside these sheep really present a sense of total terror when they order their captives into unclean positions of restraint that prohibit them from fluid movements. A couple million cell phone calls later umm none on vibrate and we get a glimpse that not only are the lives of 3 humans in jeopardy but more importantly a special DVD is being held against it’s will. Now that’s not right. Screw those stupid kids and their rich father; I want those DVDs saved at all costs especially Ferris Bueller’s Day Off.

    My favorite character in the movie is the house with its handsome good looks and wonderful disposition that exudes such a presence that it dwarfs the performances of all who share the screen with it.

    I’ve always read that so and so walked through a role without much effort and I can say that Bruce did just that. His character is not aggressive and is almost lethargic in his attempt to remedy the hostage situation. The young boy (Jimmy Bennett) was ok but the girl (Michelle Horn) was horrible and poorly cast. The villains aren’t really members of Hanson but if they were it may have been an improvement. The decision to have three geeks as the bad guys is a failure of the script and the actors playing the boys did what they could with what was given to them. Did someone ever check where that little boy went? The presentation of Talley’s family is truly unconvincing and needs to be redone, as there was no chemistry between Bruce and his movie wife Jane (Serena Scott Thomas) and daughter Amanda which is even more weird because its his real life daughter (Rumer Willis). The subplot about the father and his secret buddies who have connections everywhere is vague and unsatisfying and feels like it was thrown in to provide a false sense of cleverness to compensate for the weak main plot. What a mess. This is a TV movie that you watch and forget before bed. If I get this as a present I’ll burn it.

    D
     
  6. Pete-D

    Pete-D Screenwriter

    Joined:
    May 30, 2000
    Messages:
    1,746
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    One plot twist too many, especailly in the middle.

    It started off like a solid action flick, with Willis kind of combining the character of John McClaine with his more subdued Sixth Sense role.

    But once Willis' family gets kidnapped
    the movie just gets a bit too wacky and Willis seems to be haphazardly going through the motions. When the focus of a movie goes from caring about two kids who are being held against their will to a ... DVD with sensitive information on it, well its just a bit of an emotional let down, and worse this happens right in the middle of Act II.

    The "teenage villain" turns into a horror movie monster by the end, it just doesn't work anymore.

    I'd give it a ** out of *****
     
  7. Bob Graz

    Bob Graz Supporting Actor

    Joined:
    Sep 26, 2002
    Messages:
    798
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Hostage draws you in, provides lots of action and I found it very entertaining. It's worth seeing, and I give it a B+.
     
  8. Ron-P

    Ron-P Producer

    Joined:
    Jul 25, 2000
    Messages:
    6,284
    Likes Received:
    7
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Real Name:
    Ron
    Gets a 7 out of 10 for me. A good action film with a simple plot and some good acting.

    I had one major issue with the film...

    After they pulled Mr. Smith from the home via ambulance. They do not transport him to a hospital but keep him in the amulance, in the woods and try to revive him themselves. Talley is never questioned on Mr. Smiths whereabouts even thouth he led the pull-out, it was seen on national tv and by dozens of cops.
     
  9. BennyD

    BennyD Stunt Coordinator

    Joined:
    Jun 1, 2004
    Messages:
    70
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    I can't quite put my finger on it, since nothing about the film was horrible. Perhaps it is just that the film was mediocre. Anyhow, my gut instinct when walking out of the theater was that the movie is bad and unfortunately thinking about it further has done nothing to change that impression.

    [​IMG] / [​IMG][​IMG][​IMG][​IMG]
     
  10. todbnla

    todbnla Screenwriter

    Joined:
    Oct 17, 1999
    Messages:
    1,514
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Location:
    39466
    Real Name:
    Todd
    Saw this tonite, and I am surprised this film has not drawn more attention, a great way to spend two hours, Willis always does great when he is in action type movie. Plus, he demonstrated some great on camera emotions in this movie, IMHO.

    4 out of 5 [​IMG] 's
     

Share This Page