Under Siege Reviews
January 20, 2014
Really the only Seagal movie I like. Terrific action scenes and lots of battleship tech, with some eye candy female diversion thrown in.
January 13, 2014
Probably the only Stephen Seagal movie you will ever take remotely seriously, Under Siege deserves a viewing mostly because of its supporting cast. Tommy Lee Jones, and Gary Busey play hammy villians whose over-the-top performances perfectly compliment seagal's typical, "soft" style. The always memorable Busey even dresses up in drag and dances way too enthusiastically at the pivotal party scene. It's completely unnecessary in terms of plot, but absolutely worth it. Jones manages a relatively outstanding performance given the terrible script, which for all its problems does deliver a few gems, such as one when Seagal is trying to rally the surviving crew. As one member protests taking back the ship, Seagal reminds him, "this isn't a job; this is an adventure!" The plot is basically a generic action story that plays its hand within the opening minutes, when Busey's character orders to have the number of guards patrolling the missiles reduced. Also, the war room features probably the most incompetent group of army generals ever in a motion picture. The plan they hatch is absurdly ridiculous and inadequate. Thank goodness the Navy staffs cooks with deep, military and martial arts experience.
November 27, 2013
Well-produced Action-Schlocker starting the career of acting-non-talent Steven Seagal. Campy, hollow fun, that did not age too well. The plot is beyond absurd.
April 3, 2012
I have lived with the impression for years that Steven Seagal is a terrible actor and so I just figured Under Siege would be another monotonous Seagal flick that I would suffer through just to say I had seen it, however I excited to say Under Siege is a great little action flick, as long as you enjoy 80s style actioneers. It makes me even happier to say that Seagal more than impressed me with his rendering of the charismatic but lethal cook. Under Siege is nothing that has been done before or after (and in many cases better) but it really thrives under Seagal's superb performance which is something I never thought I would ever say after seeing a few of his other films.
October 24, 2013
Not great, but I believe that it's only one good action movie for Steven Seagal. Thanks for two villain actors - Tommy Lee Jones and Gary Busey - to give a great performance.
October 12, 2013
The best Steven Segal film.
October 11, 2013
"No wonder your a cook you fight like a faggot".
October 10, 2013
Steven gives the best performance of his acting career and this is polished by Tommy as they act out their little old hearts. The direction and editing give a tight and easy to follow story that is complimented by simple music adding to the temperament of the scenes. Ending is usual, setting around last moments but adds to the thrill. Nibbles: Chocolate Mousse.
October 5, 2013
Absolutely brilliant film. Cheesy, Funny and up there with Die Hard and Predator as films you've seen millions of times but when it comes on the TV you carry on watching.
September 30, 2013
Under Siege is one of the better Steven Seagal films I've seen so far and it's easy to see why in general it is considered to be one of his better films. Under Siege is cheesy, implausible nonsense, but it is a terrific and really fun action film no less. The acting is also fairly decent and it also has a funny sense of humor thrown into the mix. It's no masterpiece of action cinema by any means, but it is great fun for anyone who loves good popcorn fun.
September 9, 2006
A prime example of Segal in his hey-day.
September 22, 2013
Craic from the fondly remembered early nineties actioner "Under Siege":
1) Gary Busey is even more terrifying when dressed as a woman.
2) "I'm just a cook" is the second most over-quoted movie line within the catering industry in the UK (behind "That's not a knife", courtesy of Mick Dundee).
3) None of the villain's attacks register on S. Seagal at any point during the movie. (Has anyone ever properly battered him in a movie? I can't recall.)
4) The helicopter explosion was voted "Stunt of the year (1992)" by Empire Magazine. It very much beats the explosion of the Hornby train set which concludes "Under Siege 2".
5) Erika Eleniak's bare breasts are a scarcely-needed novelty when you have baddies of the calibre of Busey and Tommy Lee Jones.
6) Seagal's films used to come out at the cinema in the eighties and nineties.
7) It is much better than its sequel and just about all of his subsequent films. Especially the one with Michael Caine as an eco-terrorist.
September 22, 2013
The best film he ever done.
September 6, 2013
Saw this on 4/09/2013
I saw Under Siege because it was the only critically acclaimed film from Jason Seagal. It had a promising beginning and good one liners and it felt like Seagal's performance was alright . But after the impressive first half this film goes onto being a derivative, ultra predictable misfire combined with a poor show from the lead actor. The violence in the film was disgusting. Tommy Lee Jones looked great as the villain in the first half, but towards the climax, he is reduced to nothing but a stereotypical villlain. The worst part of this film is Seagal's poor action scenes using the knife. It looks unrealistic and artificial to the core. Seagal slashes the knife blandly at the camera with no likfe or facial expressions and it's awful.
August 8, 2013
His most popular, as well as close to his best. Must see
August 6, 2013
Directed by Andrew Davis (The Fugitive (1993), Chain Reaction (1996) and Holes (2003)) and written by J. F. Lawton (Pretty Woman (1990) and DOA: Dead or Alive (2006)), this is a good action film which manages to have tense moments and silly moments. It has some over the top acting in it, but it's concept is good enough to pass for a likeable action film. Another example of action films not being like what they used to. Chief Casey Ryback (Steven Seagal) was a former Navy SEAL who lost his privileges after a botched operation, and now works as the head chef on board the USS Missouri, personally cooking for Captain Adams (Patrick O'Neal). A helicopter is arriving with food for Captain Adams' birthday, but it turns out it isn't the caterers are really murderous mercenaries led by renegade ex-CIA spy Bill Strannix (Tommy Lee Jones), who has been able to infiltrate the ship no thanks to Commander Krill (Gary Busey). But, they didn't count on Ryback, who is down in the kitchen, and about to use his wits and physical prowess to take on Strannix and his band of baddies. It has some good moments, but there's too much scenery chewing from Jones and Busey, but it manages to be a fun and even claustrophobic film at times. Plus, it was the only Steven Seagal film to be nominated for any Oscars, it didn't win any, but good enough anyways.
July 28, 2013
With a decent supporting cast this film pulls of the Die Hard on a ship routine action film. Seagal who plays Ryback is an amiable cook/navy seal expert. Its formulaic in its delivery as these films tend to be but its great in its delivery of action sequences and Seagal does deliver.
December 4, 2007
Seagal's Citizen Kane. Despite being "Die Hard" on a battleship, the film is a solid, tense action flick. Director Andrew Davis' next film was "The Fugitive."
July 23, 2013
A good bit of fun with a amazing and manic performance from Tommy Lee Jones.
September 7, 2012
Steven Seagal is an action star that's definitely fallen on some hard times but 1992's "Under Siege" proves that with the right script and director the guy can be an action all-star. The premise is pretty familiar to fans of action films but it's directed with a lot of energy and genuine joy: Seagal plays "Casey Ryback", a cook on a nuclear battleship that's about to be retired. There's a surprise party planned for the captain by "Commander Krill" but there's more to the party than just music and a hot lady busting out of the cake. Enter Tommy Lee Jones as "William Strannix" who, along with his crew, is masquerading as entertainers so that they can commandeer the ship, steal it's nuclear arsenal and sell it to the highest bidder. All of the sailors are either killed or captured and it's up to Ryback, along with "Miss July", the playboy playmate brought on board (Erika Eleniak as "Jordan Tate") to save the day.
So obviously just from this set-up there are a couple of things you can predict. 1) A conclusion featuring a man-to-man combat sequence with Tommy Lee Jones and Steven Seagal. 2) A love plot as Ryback and Tate bond between the battle sequences 3) a lot of bad guys who can't aim very well. Well, you'd be right but a significant portion of the entertainment you'll get out of "Under Siege" is just that, seeing those elements that you want to see in a good action movie play out. Rising the film above the basic formula on which it was written are a couple of memorable elements. First of all, the villains are really terrific. The big mastermind is Tommy Lee Jones who plays an intelligent, greedy and totally off-the-wall ex-CIA agent. There's a sequence where he convinces everyone that isn't on the ship that he's just a mad dog, looking to blow up the world with his new-found arsenal and you realize that this guy is a brilliant strategist, setting up his crew to contain the threats instead of just killing them all (possible hostages for later), concocting an elaborate plan that's pretty ingenious and would succeed easily if it wasn't for that one rogue element that's wandering through the ship picking off his men one by one. There's also Gary Busey, who plays a terrific creep. He's always getting under your skin, making you fantasize about this guy getting a bullet in the head for every time he talks down to our hero and for all of the aggravating things he does. At times he's funny and the next scene you see his genuinely cruel and sadistic side and it gets tense.
So you've got your bad guys, but what about the heroes? Well you've got the previously mentioned Seagal, who definitely has the chops to pull off the demanding stunts and combat sequences in the film. His character is decently fleshed out and he's got some good charisma. He's exciting to watch because his character really knows what he's doing. Ryback is always setting up booby traps, ambushing the goons after him and using his brain to get out of a jam. Not only does it reduce the cliche that the bad guys can't shoot very well (because often they don't even have the chance to pull the trigger) but he also genuinely seems like a threat to the hijackers because of his ingenuity. Jordan Tate stands out quite a bit as well. She's the only woman in the movie and she is smokin' hot. There's more to her than her than eye-candy though, her character actually grows throughout the film to become a competent fighter herself. At first she's just following Ryback because she doesn't want to be alone but eventually she starts carrying her own weight and turns out to be a critical asset for the good guys. This is not a character that becomes strong and is later reduced to a useless damsel in distress during the climax; she's a strong, sexy woman.
The hand-to-hand combat in the film is terrific and well edited so you can always tell who's fighting who and what the killing blow looked like. Actually the whole movie is well shot and the sets are amazing. The movie's production is first rate because they actually placed the actors on a real battleship (or if they had sets they definitely fooled me). It helps the whole movie feel that much more authentic. There's some pretty surprising "oh snap!" moments when the mooks get taken out by Ryback and some good moments of tension when he gets stuck in a jam or injured. Some of the events in the film happen with some awfully convenient timing (a bomb in the kitchen for example) and the movie is missing some great, memorable one-liners unfortunately. Like all great action films there are some funny moments, one of the best being an exchange between Ryback and Tate, where she complains that she has to carry all the gear, to which Ryback replies "Tell you what, I'll carry everything, you kill anyone we run into". Funny stuff.
Ultimately what "Under Siege" is lacking in originality it makes up in production and enthusiasm. The villains are strong, the female lead is a real delight to follow and although Seagal isn't a great actor he makes for a hero you're excited to see. There are some sequences that will genuinely surprise you. J.F. Lawton's script knows what your expectations of these types of films are and plays with them. Want a solid action film that's a lot of fun to watch? Check out "Under Siege" it's Seagal's best film. (Dvd, June 23, 2013)