This film could well be the first 'Die Hard on a' example to come along, 'Die Hard on a mountain'? meh maybe its just me?. The whole thing is your standard action fare really, nothing original and nothing fresh. A bunch of bad guys after lost millions on a mountain, hostages, plenty of gunfire, plenty of blood, lots of profanity and an evil caddish bad guy boss to equal Rickman's 'Hans Gruber'.
I must admit I never really liked this film as it just feels too run of the mill, accept for being based on a mountain of course (mountainous snowy terrain). I've always been in the Arnie camp personally I never really thought Stallone could match up with his efforts. I simply cannot look at this film without thinking of 'Die Hard/Die Hard 2', its such a copy, really it is, right down to Lithgow's corny British villain.
The action isn't all that impressive either really, a mixture of highly dangerous stunts which are admittedly good enough to make your palms sweat, and blatantly obvious sets. One minute the film looks sweet as a nut with some lovely location shots and real live action, the next you're looking at some crappy bluescreen effects or an obvious plastic rubbery set. Actually to be honest the film is a bit drab looking for the most part, lots of grey and white rocky terrain.
The entire cast in this film is pretty boring too, the bad guys aren't really very interesting but that's cos we don't really get to know them. All the good guys n gals are just wet and annoying, Rooker's character does so much slow motion running and screaming its hilarious, did this film start that trend?!. Only Lithgow holds things together with his hammy campness, problem there is he doesn't really look right for the part nor does he look like he could beat up Stallone, but his evilness is fun.
Can't deny the film is a blast of adrenaline with its ridiculous moments of sheer dumbness. Stallone climbing up the rockface in his t-shirt, then whilst under the frozen icy water he removes everything and goes topless! why exactly? but hey this is a stupid action thriller what do you expect. A decent flick for the Stallone camp but its complete lack of realism and easy to spot stunt doubles/bad effects are all too clear. Great film title though.
This film is just reall, a crazy B-Movie, but it's so damn entertaining and well done that it's hard not to like. It's got suspense, acton, tons of violence, it looks terrific, features wonderful scenery, and has some great music too.
This was also back when Renny Harlin was a good director of this sort of thing before he became a joke and enterted a state of failure he has yet to recover from. Like Die Hard 2 (which preceeded this film), this is Harlin doing a fantastic job of taking a simple premise, throwing in lots of thrills, getting a good cast together, and making a totally awesome piece of entertainment.
Give this one a watch. It's great.
I like just about all of Sylvester Stallone's movies, but "Cliffhanger" is one of my favorites because it has cool scenery and some of the best special effects. I thought the part where Stallone is underwater while one of the bad guys are watching him from above the frozen surface was one of the best parts. The ending sequence is also well done. John Lithgow puts on a spectacular performance as the main enemy. If you like action movies with great effects and a lot of suspense, I recommend getting "Cliffhanger." NOTE: That was my Amazon review from the year 2000. Sylvester Stallone's easily one of my favorite action movie actors, period, and I've always considered this to be one of his very best.
Gabe Walker: What's in them?
Travers: None of your fucking business!
Eric Qualen: Suits, socks, 100 million dollars - the usual stuff.
Its Die Hard, on a cliff! Stallone climbs rocks and kills the bad guys. A joy to watch when it's on tv.
You have a standard plot mixed with a heavy opening sequence, some good climbing action and a nice Renny Harlin R rated action style, all you need.
Hal Tucker: Gravity's a bitch, ain't it?