In the Line of Fire Reviews
Oh sure, the film is slick, Hollywood-ized and not without some cliches, but despite all that, this is a tightly wound, occasionally very smart, and engaging thriller. What really makes a lot of it work is Jeff Maguire's great script, and the standout performances from a talented and notable cast. Eastwood brings genuine class, heart, and authenticity to the role of Frank, and John Malkovich, though he's now typecasted for this sort of thing, is truly mancing and scary as the cunning, devious, and psyche bruising antagonist. He's played some really great and chilling villains before, but this one easily deserves to be somewhere very near, if not right on top of that list. He brings jsut the right touch to keep the character from becoming a cartoon, or just mindless.
Rene Russo is nice as a tough field chief working with Frank who, despite a rocky start, does begin to warm up to him and become one of the few people he can really trust, which is even more important when things really start to build up to the climax. Dylan McDermot is also fine, though a little rough around the edges in his turn as a rookie agent. It's fun seeing Gary Cole in a pre-Brady Bunch and Office Space role that's as far from comedic as you can get.
I could really nit-pick if I wanted to, but it's really not all that necessary. This isn't the most ingenious film ever, but it's never dull, got a great set up, some really good characters, and the themes of guilt, redemption, and the commonalities between predator and prey are all examined in a well done and entertaining manner. I did like Ennio Morricone's score, but, honestly, I think that might be the only there here that could really be seen as rather weak and a little disappointing.
All in all though, this really does have a great plot and is one of the best thrillers out there. Definitely give this one a watch and prepare yourself for Wolfgang Petersen and his great cast giving some of their best work. As a nice bonus, there's actually some good humorous moments as well that surprisingly fit in instead of sticking out awkwardly.
the story he tells never lets up. In The Line Of Fire is very tense up until the climax, and is edge of your seat entertainment. Like I've mentioned before, In The Line Of Fire is an almost perfect Thriller, but a few parts where cheesy and could have been better. But for the most part, this film succeeds in being a terrific film. In The Line Of Fire, for me is one of the best Thrillers to ever be released. With Clint Eastwood (whom I am a big fan of) and John Malkovich that go head to head, it's a very exciting film going experience. Two brilliant actors give excellent performances and this is quite possibly the best, most smartly crafted Thriller in a long time. Truly unique, and jaw dropping entertainment.
Mitch Leary: I see you, Frank. I see you standing over the grave of another dead president.
Frank Horrigan: That's not going to happen. I'm onto you.
Mitch Leary: Forget it, Frank. I am willing to trade my life for his. I am smart, and I am willing, and that is all it takes. That president is coming home from California in a box.
Frank Horrigan: Where in California?
Mitch Leary: Uh, the address? Come on, Frank. I'll keep you in the game, but I'm not going to throw it for you.
Clint Eastwood and John Malkovich star as rivals in this top notch assassination thriller from director Wolfgang Peterson. The story involves a clever assassin toying with a secret service agent, who years prior failed to react during Kennedy's assassination.
Eastwood is Agent Frank Horrigan, a senior agent who suddenly finds himself the pawn of Malkovich's Mitch Leary, a man bent on making Horrigan's life hell as he taunts him with plans of murdering the president. Soon, Horrigan, his partner played by Dylan McDermott, and a female agent played by Rene Russo, among others are all part of the investigation hoping to catch Leary before its too late.
This is a very enjoyable thriller. Its quick paced, works well with its premise, provides a fun and exciting cat and mouse game, and treats its two best aspects very well. Eastwood is rocking it hard with his cool yet remorseful secret service agent, while Malkovich is quite slimy and crafty as the assassin. Russo also plays well with the obligatory yet workable female interest.
Frank Horrigan: How's the First Lady? She ask about me?
Lilly Raines: Have you gotten to know them yet?
Frank Horrigan: Well, I normally prefer not to get to know the people I'm protecting.
Lilly Raines: Oh, yeah? Why's that?
Frank Horrigan: Well, you never know. You might decide they're not worth taking a bullet for.
It was also a nice touch having Ennio Morricone (of Eastwood's famous westerns) compose the score for this flick. Its just another thing that fits in nicely with a Peterson film, who knows how to give a big Hollywood production what it needs. But there are more redeeming factors at play here.
There are two great monologues in this movie, that I chose not to post because of how good they are. One has Malkovich question Eastwood's defining career moment from the past and the other is Eastwood sharing his own thoughts on this matter for the first time to another. In a Hollywood thriller like this, its the way these characters handle these scenes that represents why this is an all around solid film.
Mitch Leary: I have a rendezvous with death, and so does the President, and so do you if you get too close.
Frank Horrigan: You have a rendezvous with my ass, motherfucker!
Wolfgang Petersen directs this thriller that takes us into the Secret Service for the first time. Eastwood plays Horrigan like Dirty Harry- even more so than the actual Dirty harry film The Dead Pool. But the true standout is Malkovich who plays the psychotic Mitch Leary with such calmness and delight you almost feel sad when he leaves the screen.