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Hard Target (1993)


Average Rating: 5.3/10
Reviews Counted: 30
Fresh: 15
Rotten: 15

Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.

Average Rating: 6.1/10
Reviews Counted: 9
Fresh: 6
Rotten: 3

Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.


Average Rating: 2.8/5
User Ratings: 35,456



Movie Info

John Woo's first Hollywood feature stars Jean-Claude Van Damme as Chance Boudreaux, a down-and-out Cajun merchant seaman, who, after saving a young woman, Natasha Binder (Yancy Butler), from a gang of thugs on the streets of New Orleans, agrees to help her search for her father (Chuck Pfarrer), a homeless Vietnam vet. They locate local businessman Randall Poe (Elliott Keener), for whom the vet had been working, and learn that her father has become a victim of wealthy sportsman Emil Fouchon … More

Action & Adventure
Directed By:
In Theaters:
Jun 30, 1998
MCA Universal Home Video


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Critic Reviews for Hard Target

All Critics (30) | Top Critics (9) | Fresh (15) | Rotten (15) | DVD (2)

A disappointing American debut of the Hong Kong cult director John Woo is a decent action vehicle by standards of its star Jean-Claude Van Damme but, hampered by a B script and flat characters, it doesn't bear Woo's auteurist signature and unique vision

Full Review… | October 10, 2006
Top Critic

It's what Hollywood wanted Woo for: bigger, brighter explosions.

Full Review… | June 24, 2006
Time Out
Top Critic

Presenting Mr. Van Damme as reverentially as Sergio Leone did the young Clint Eastwood, Mr. Woo displays a real aptitude for malignant mischief, which is this story's stock in trade.

Full Review… | August 30, 2004
New York Times
Top Critic

Even when the acting is hammy, notably Wilford Brimley's turn as Chance's Cajun uncle, Woo stages every fight with hypnotic grace.

May 12, 2001
Rolling Stone
Top Critic

Woo, a master of stylized violence and explosive action, has had to buy into America's fascination with explosive effects and reaction. Something gets lost in the transition.

Full Review… | January 1, 2000
Washington Post
Top Critic

Its characters are poorly-developed, the plot is the pinnacle of absurdity, and the acting, at best, is well over-the-top. Nevertheless, on the most basic, visceral level, the film succeeds.

Full Review… | January 1, 2000
Top Critic

Though working on a Jean-Claude Van Damme vehicle can be seen as a comedown for Woo, he rises to the occasion to create an often rousing entertainment that is almost inarguably Van Damme's best film to date.

Full Review… | November 2, 2008
TV Guide's Movie Guide

One of my greatest guilty pleasures.

Full Review… | May 26, 2006
Combustible Celluloid

Hysterically inept attempt at action filmmaking

January 20, 2006
Lawrence Journal-World

A combo of American Honk Kong actioners that fails to show John Woo's distinctive talent

July 3, 2005

Should have been so much better.

September 16, 2004
New Times

Click to read review

Full Review… | January 2, 2004

It may once have been a second-rate "B" picture, but John Woo turns it into something better.

October 20, 2003
San Francisco Examiner

Van Damme's kicks and flips never looked so cool.

Full Review… | September 10, 2002
Montreal Film Journal

Hard target my ass.

Full Review… | January 1, 2000

The result is without question the best film Van Damme has ever made. But it's also quite possibly the weakest in Woo's filmography.

Full Review… | January 1, 2000
Deseret News, Salt Lake City

It's a nice change of pace to see a strong, competent woman in a John Woo film. If you've never heard of the man, this is your chance to see what all the buzz is about.

Full Review… | January 1, 2000
Austin Chronicle

Audience Reviews for Hard Target


Directors Cat
Directors Cat

Super Reviewer

Director, John Woo's first American film is an action masterpiece. A fun, explosive and adrenaline-charged edge of your seat action-packed thriller. It's loaded with dark humor, bone-crunching fights and enough explosive gun-battles to keep any action fan entertained. Van Damme and Woo are a stellar team together, bringing exactly what we want. Easily one of Jean-Claude Van Damme's best films. Lance Henriksen gives a thrilling and intense performance. This is one wickedly cool and wildly entertaining action movie.

Al S

Super Reviewer


Haha this is really silly and really tacky but again the over the top violence and ultra cool gun fights really rock ass LOL! Henriksen gives it a touch of class and really hams it up beautiully haha and Woo really loves his slow mo leaps n gun pan shots LOL!. Predictable but great fun, and a dodgy Jean Claude hair style.

Phil Hubbs

Super Reviewer

Van Damme has one Badass haircut...but otherwise...a pretty average movie

Martin Sahlin

Super Reviewer

Hard Target Quotes

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