Sunday, April 4, 2010

Run away from 'Pursued'

Pursued (2004)
Starring: Christian Slater, Gil Bellows and Estella Warren
Director: Kristoffer Tabori
Rating: Three of Ten Stars

Never-say-die corporate headhunter Vincent Palmer (Christian Slater) sets his sights on Ben Keats (Gil Bellows) to recruit him away from a small hi-tech firm about to revolutionize the security industry to take the helm of a failing computer company. Vincent has yet to fail to recruit a mark yet, and that is because he is a complete psycho that uses everything from blackmail to murder in order to force his targets to sign on the dotted line. Soon, Vincent is threatening everything and everyone around Ben, including his naive wife (Warren) and little daughter.

The movie starts out promising, but it quickly becomes a boring morass of characters doing dumb things because the plot requires it, seemingly intelligent characters not using resources and options at their disposal, and just bad script writing. Once Ben catches onto what Vincent is up to, he SHOULD have been able to turn the tables on him, or even get the police involved, but he doesn't, because the movie would have been an hour long... or we might even have gotten an intelligent and satisfying spin on the hunted becoming the hunter instead of a lame, made-for-TV fight scene at the end.

Christian Slater does a good job as the psycho headhunter, but every other part in thefilm is both weak in the dialogue and performances. (And what the heck is up with Estella Warren's lips?! I've heard of the 'bee-stung look,' but there's gotta be something physically wrong with someone with lips THAT puffy and swollen!)

So, unless you're a huge fan of late-nite cable fare, avoid "Pursued."

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