We’re suckers for Jenuet, what can I say… since Delicatessen he’s managed to keep us enthralled (and, yes, I know that includes Alien 4, but even that had its moments if not a great flick). His sense of humor and whimsy, which surfaces no matter how dark the subject, keeps you laughing and, ultimately, acknowledging the enjoyment of life. Yes, very French, but only if gene-spliced with Monty Python’s demon child.
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And this is a light 3 stars at that. Poor Nick Cage. He isn’t a bad actor, but this was just not something that he could deliver. This is a difficult movie to start off with as it is a remake. And worse yet, a story that is essentially one-way. Once you understand it, it loses its power. It doesn’t have to be that way with “secret” movies, but that is how this works out. There are no believable relationships or characters to hang your hat on in this production despite the loads of talent and visual richness. And with no believable relationships and characters, you ain’t got nothin’ to pull you along or to pull you back.
While there are interesting twists to the original flick, that starred a younger Edward Woodward, it is essentially the same tale. And, yes, I’ve seen the original and recommend it over this version, if nothing else as it is such a product of its time that it has huge kitsch value.