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Thursday, June 1, 2017

No Way Out (1987)

A Navy Lt. Commander (Kevin Costner) works for the Secretary of Defense (Gene Hackman). Unbeknownst to the Secretary, the Commander is also sleeping with the woman (Sean Young) who is the Defense Secretary's mistress. When she is killed, the Secretary puts the Commander in charge of finding her killer ..... who is the Secretary of Defense! Based on the novel THE BIG CLOCK by Kenneth Fearing which had previously been made under that title in 1948 by John Farrow. Robert Garland's screenplay gussies it up and gives it a new coat but the 1948 film was tighter and leaner while this version doesn't get going until almost halfway into the movie. The exposition is a drag and the charmless Sean Young is of no help and it's actually a relief when she's removed from the film so we don't have to deal with her any longer. But after that it picks up considerable steam and turns into a real nail biter until the very end when it just goes over the top loopy, particularly evident in Will Patton's (who plays Hackman's right hand man) character. It's entertaining enough but not good enough to take seriously. Directed by Roger Donaldson (THE BOUNTY). With Howard Duff, George Dzundza, Fred Dalton Thompson and Iman (really the only likable character in the movie).

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