Saturday, August 13, 2011

365 Movies Day #138 "Sudden Death"

Van Damme is back on the blog, last seen playing himself in "JCVD". This time he is Darren McCord, fire security officer (and former firefighter) for the NHL Stanley Cup finals. The film was actually produced by the owner of the Pittsburgh Penguins and written by his wife. McCord quickly becomes the only man who can save everyone in the Civic Arena when terrorists led by Powers Boothe ("FRAILTY", "EXTREME PREJUDICE") kidnap the vice president and promise to blow up the Arena at the close of the game.

The big hitch is that McCord's little girl is kidnapped by the terrorists and held hostage along with the VP in the executive suite. The coolest thing about this movie, other than watching Powers Boothe play an amazing and vicious badguy (the key to 90s action), is watching Van Damme actually emote. He played a real guy forced into a bad situation. Not until JCVD did I really see this vulnerable side again. He ACTED in this film and it shows. He's actually a talented cat.

The film features veteran character actors like Raymond J. Barry as the Vice President and Michael Gaston as Boothe's computer expert. (NO it isn't Mitch Pileggi of "X-Files" and "Sons of Anarchy"...though yesterday I would have sworn by it). Director Peter Hyams gave us such action classics as Van Damme's "Timecop", Sean Connery's "Outland" and "The Presidio" and one of Tom Sizemore's only leading roles in "The Relic", not to mention Sci Fi classic "2010: The Year We Make Contact".

Between Boothe and Van Damme this film is a definite winner!


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