Friday, January 27, 2017
TERMINAL VELOCITY (1993)
Directed By: Deran Sarafian
Written By: David Twohy
Cinematography By: Oliver Wood
Editor: Peck Prior & Frank J. Urioste
Cast: Charlie Sheen, Nastassja Kinski, James Gandolfini, Christopher McDonald, Suli McCullough, Melvin Van Peebles, Gary Bullock, Brooke Langton
A maverick skydiver and a former KGB agent team up to stop the Russian mafia from stealing gold. I remember seeing this film as a free screening a few days before it came out. It was meant to help build positive buzz for the film.
It was one of the first types of these screenings I had ever gone to, plus at the time was a mild Charlie Sheen fan and hoped he would find the right film to bring begin to the top again. Unfortunately this was not one of those films. Even though I didn't pay for the film I remember being heavily disappointed.
Nastassja Kinski also helped me into thinking this film might be worthwhile as at the time it had been while since she had started in a film. So I believed maybe this was the right projects
In fact there is only one scene of note within this film and it involves skydiving and a convertible car. The only other thing I remember is dialogue in two scenes that I found funny. The films offbeat comedic moments are the only things that mostly work. The rest of the film is fairly ridiculous even for a 90's action film that involves Russian spies. He film tries to have a credible espionage story that involves the KGB, but as with most of the film it comes off more as laughable and like a holdover from a previous era.
This film seems like it only came about because Charlie sheen starred in it and he seems to have wanted this to be like POINT BREAK. When it comes to the skydiving scenes though for a film that is supposed to have. Bunch of it. DROP ZONE with Wesley snipes comes off as more impressive. That should give you a hint of the quality of the skydiving scenes which should be a highlight of this film but come off more as boring and less than Standard.
At a budget of 50 million the film unsurprisingly bombed. Though Charlie sheen was offered the starring role after Tom Cruise and Michael Douglas both passed on the film. The films budget is shocking considering it has the overall look of a B-Movie. Especially the cast at the time
There is also a lot of gun play bit more one sided as the Main Characters always seem to be getting shot at and rarely shoot back. Instead they keep escaping and using other elements to fight back. Which can be used creatively or even to a Degree realistically but here come off as lame. As sheen's character is only a skydiving instructor not ex-cop or military. So he is a simple civilian. So I read the film has more stunts then gun play.
This seems like a film that would have gone straight to cable hat strangely made it to theaters because of having Charlie Sheen in the lead of the film.
The film has an impressive cast for an uninspired b-movie. Which unfortunately I should have known. As I remember director Deran Sarafin's previous films GUNMEN and DEATH WARRANT at the time and was hoping that was just a fluke and he had gotten better unfortunately not here as everything in the film seems either dusty or covered in rust.
Out of the cast Christopher McDonald comes out the worst if only for his badly dyed blonde hair he is forced to have throughout. Here is nothing wrong with his performance other then his wardrobe.
James Gandolfini actually comes off the best as before this I remember him as a violent women eating henchman in TRUE ROMANCE. Here he plays a character full of surprises a mild character at first who soon reveals himself to be the most scarily violent one of all.
You get the feeling this film could have been mindless fun with someone else at the helm. As the film feels somewhat lifeless and dull most of the time until the action sequences. Waiting for those moments though drain any entertainment and interest while you get there
The film tries to display. Certain level of excitement for the audience but comes off more as boring. As everything seems telegraphed and predictable even the initial mystery that sets all of this up.