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A movie directed by Richard Donner

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  • Jun 19, 2000
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An edgy movie based on just who is watching who that is watching who. Gibson plays a cab driver in New York - enough there to make you paranoid. He spends a lot of time watching Roberts through her windows. Other people spend a lot of time watching him watch her. She, in the meantime, is only watching her own inner pain.

Somewhere along the line Gibson has been taken over by the mysterious "They" people. We all know ‘em. We've all quoted em. You know - "They" said it was going to rain", "They" say you'll get along after your marriage breaks up", "They" say you'll recover from the death of a loved one. THOSE "They" people. Unfortunately, Gibson's "They" people are real.

His association with Roberts is strained at best. At one time he had saved her from a mugging, so he feels a connection to her. A bond, if you will. He feels like he is her protector. Unconsciously, I think he recognizes her own hidden belief in the "They" people. Roberts is a junior DA immersed in grief over the murder of her father. So, once again, we have two lonely isolated souls touching each others lives, minds and hearts. And Gibson isn't the easiest person to get in touch with here.

Enter those guys - they manage to whisk Gibson off, though how they ever managed to break through his defenses is beyond me. The leader of the pack is Patrick Stewart. This is one evil dude! Hey, Pat - stay on Starship or wherever you normally hang out - stop dropping into these movies and wrecking havoc. I hated him, wanted to scratch his eyes out, wanted to stand him in the corner and give him a ‘time out' Wow, what a creep! He was walking evil in this movie. Great job, Pat!

I am not a big Julia Roberts fan but I love her laugh. She laughs from the soul, it just bursts forth from her. However in this movie she is edgy and just about as paranoid as Gibson. As in Sleeping with the Enemy, she jumps and jitters at the appropriate times. She looks scared but she also has the cohunes to do something about it.

Could Gibson be a psycho? Can anyone talk that fast other than Robin Williams? Frankly, I wanted to slide him a Valium, poor guy. And yet he played the part so well. Didn't his house absolutely floor you? And why don't I have an escape hatch in mine ... hey ... he kinda goes for those escape hatches. Didn't he have one in one of the Lethal Weapon series? Maybe he IS paranoid!

Like monsters, dreams and the future, I believe also in conspiracies. Am I paranoid? I think not. Just a product of the pall that settled over this country with ‘The Cold War', ‘Spys', ‘Kennedyx2', ‘King', and countless other things I have witnessed since becoming a person aware of their surroundings. Do I think there is someone personally out to get me like Gibson? No, certainly not. In the scheme of things I am just a bug but like this movie infers, there are bigger fish out there and they are on the hook.

Some say Gibson was a poor choice for this movie. He is too cute, too clean, too vulnerable, too soulful. Would you have been happier, for instance, with a Norman Bates type character or with even Stewart playing the part? How ‘bout Jon Voigt, perennial bad guy? I think not. In my eyes it WAS Gibson's vulnerability, his trusting looks, those ‘help me' eyes of his that made this conspiracy more believable.

Was Gibson paranoid? Were there conspiracies? Was he at the base of some evil plot put into place years ago? Was he having repressed memories or was he just a friggin nut case? You figure it out.


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Susi Dawson ()
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About this movie


A crackpot Big Apple cabbie finds himself in a heap of trouble after his self-published conspiracy 'zine elicits the interest of some shady government heavies--and leads to the unexplained murders of all five subscribers. As the J. Edgars close in, he takes to the lam with the one person who may be able to help him--a Justice Department attorney with a mysterious murder of her own to solve.
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Director: Richard Donner
Release Date: 1997
MPAA Rating: R
DVD Release Date: Warner Home Video (June 30, 2009)
Runtime: 2hr 15min
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