I have not seen the original movie, OK, so don’t get on my case. I like cat burglar movies, I like movies about zillionaires who steal for the thrill, and I like cat and mouse games between attractive people. That said, I was moderately entertained by the storyline (I just don’t buy them as a couple or a couple-to-be or whatever), I was enormously entertained by how much I got to see Pierce Brosnan naked or shirtless (WOOF – he was and is my first pubescent crush), and I was pretty darn entertained by the plot. Rene Russo – kudos to a 40 yr. old lady looking so very prosperous and hot-bodied, but something about her face makes her look like a wild animal fighting to get out of a leather purse. It’s a shame. Ironically (to me), Faye Dunaway, another surgically enhanced alien life form, played the original girl chasing Crown, and she cameos as his psychiatrist. If not for her wispy gray hair, her skin is pulled so tight she only looks 5 years older than Rene Russo – which, I am sorry to say, is not a compliment to either of them.
Russo runs around way overdressed (gowns by Celine) and talking seductively to every single person she speaks with, be it Detective Denis Leary or Crown or even the pizza guy. She is set up to be a hot mama and she generally pulls it off but I keep waiting for her skull to leap out of her face. Otherwise, she looks *awesome* – I didn’t look that foxy at, well, at any age, dangit. Woof! The dance scene is very sheer and hot and what a great dress (with a slip, say)! Then the love scenes are actually so affectionate and playful it breaks the mood – no longer are these two people superhuman coolness machines mating in a frenzy of recognized peerage – now they are fun cool people who happen to have a servant bring them their morning coffee after playing giggle and tickle all night. It’s kooky. Russo seems positively smug to be getting to manhandle Brosnan in front of millions of people. I guess I would be too! back to the costumes for a minute – this is the only non-action sci-fi fantasy movie that costume designer Kate Harrington has ever done. Just an interesting point – she did fine, letting one designer take over for Russo’s wardrobe, but she looked too…done.
The cat burglary stuff is beautifully planned out and smooth. Everyone seems to be a little psychic – someone says “huh, looks like it’s going to rain,” and someone else says, “so, how long has your mother been dead?” Lots of people reading each other like books in a world full of deception and trust and mistrust and misinformation and…his laughing shrink can’t read him but some hot tanning bed victim (who still comes off looking very pale!) walks up and calls his whole life story? I don’t get it. Perhaps some scenes were lost in editing. The lifestyles of the extremely rich can only interest me for so long – sure, who doesn’t kind of wonder how they would make off with the Hope Diamond? But when you get it, do you imagine $100,000 boats and bets and insane expenses and things to do – I imagined the budget of the movie just trying to create a lifestyle for Mr. Crown was more than the budget to prep, shoot, cast, feed, develop, market, and edit the thing. So I get bored watching the super rich jet off to wherever and not go in to work and boating and golfing and….yawn! I’m sure it’s great work if you can get it.
The acting (besides the mild overdoing it on the seductive talk and the super-cosmopolitan-so-continental-it-hurts business) is good, the story is engaging – it’s a slow build up to the payoff and then there are so many disappointments along the way (on purpose, I mean) that it gets frustrating to watch sometimes. Why can’t people just communicate? It would save so much time. But then again, it wouldn’t be any fun at all. The best moments are of course the moments of realization. It shouldn’t disappoint you as a standalone film – I can’t speak for the original.
MPAA Rating R for some sexuality and language.
Release date 8/6/99
Time in minutes 125
Director John McTiernan