Tommy Lee Jones is awesome in this 1998 thriller. It was produced at a time when it was still OK to portray law enforcement as macho. But I bet you didn’t know this about the weathered faced, gun totting enforcer of the law:
He (Tommy Lee Jones) attended Harvard College on need-based aid; his roommate was future Vice PresidentAl Gore. As an upperclassman, he stayed in Dunster House with roommates Gore and Bob Somerby, who later became editor of the media criticism site The Daily Howler. Jones graduated cum laude with a Bachelor of Arts degree in English in 1969; his senior thesis was on “the mechanics of Catholicism” in the works of Flannery O’Connor.[Wiki
Wesley Snipes also performs well above average as the ever-resourceful, escape artist fugitive. As Jones and his crew of U.S. Marshals pursue Snipes from Chicago to the swamps of Kentucky and then onto New York, the evidence against Snipes starts to smell overcooked. The State Department security gets involved and I love how they are portrayed: dark suits, sunglasses, non-distinct features.
The special effects are also splendid. An airplane crash gets five stars for creativity. I loved the swamp scenes. The views of downtown Chicago from the U.S. Marshal’s office make you want to visit the windy city. Even the car chase scenes in New York are fresh.
Don’t let the vintage of the movie dissuade you. It’s fun to see mobile phones the size of a small shoe, Robert Downey Jr looks fresh out of college and the police are not on the defensive. One drawback is the two weak female roles– but it’s a reminder that most movies today have more substantial parts for women. This film is worth your time.