The Siege

6 out of 10


Pro-Liberal-America Thriller

They say when America coughs, the world catches pneumonia. This film gives the impression, possibly correctly, that when the US stubs its toe, it feels the need to be rushed immediately to the Emergency Ward for urgent CRT. Whilst one cannot in anyway say that a bus and its occupants being blown to bits is not serious, the suggestion that half a dozen Arab terrorists can paralyse America with fear and bring the viability of their beloved Constitution into question is quite bizarrely foreign to the average gutsy Brit who has lived quite comfortably for 35 years or so with the daily threat of IRA bombs the size of dumper trucks that can fell a 30-storey building in a single hit.

The performances of Denzel Washington as true American FBI hero and his CIA contact Annette Bening are truly outstanding, yet one still feels that we`ve seen it all before. Yet again, all the good guys are either ethnic minorities or whining liberals, the terrorists are merely the downtrodden products of CIA manipulation, and the bad guys are careerist WASP`s and knee jerk army types. Indeed, the ending is a textbook cliche with outgunned heroes triumphing over evil without a shot after the standard, "I believe in America and it`s Constitution" speech we`ve heard in countless movies like "The Postman". Only a camera shot of "Old Glory" fluttering in the background is needed to have the Yanks weeping in the aisles with pride.

Well-Made, But Predictable "I Love America" Cliche

Film Critic: Robert L Thompsett