A murdered wife. A one-armed man. An obsessed detective. The chase begins.
Director: Andrew Davis
Release Date: September 1993
Plot: Dr Richard Kimble, unjustly accused of murdering his wife, must find the real killer while being the target of a nationwide manhunt led by a seasoned U.S. Marshal.
Based on the original 60s TV show of the same name, The Fugitive is a fast-paced action thriller film done right, helped by an all-star cast, skilful directing and a plot that makes it difficult to look away, even if you are trying to write up another review at the time.
Unlike most thrillers that have come since, The Fugitive avoids using profanity, violence, and nudity to keep you entertained, instead weaving a compelling story crammed with suspense and few of plot holes, all of which means that the film more than succeeds at doing the one thing a good thriller should do, keep you on the edge of your seat.
I mentioned earlier how good Davis did at directing the film. He really smashed it here, with every shot executed so well, without doing anything overtly groundbreaking. It’s clear that he really has a knack for directing action/thriller films, with the chase scenes through the tunnels a particular delight.
It’s hard to think of a film in which Ford delivers a bad performance, with this film no exception, smashing it as a man on the run with Dr Kimble. staying likeable throughout. Tommy Lee Jones also brings his A-game, it’s of no wonder he won an Oscar, the brash yet the likeable way he plays Marshal Gerald is my highlight of this film. With both being so strong, you find it hard to root for one over the other.
One of the things I found really helped keep the film ticking was the injection of action throughout, starting with the high octane train crash sequence, which still holds up even today, I can’t say this enough but practical effects are just better.
All in all, this is not only one of both Ford’s and Jones’s best performances, but it is also easily the best action/suspense film of the nineties.
If you liked: Chain Reaction, Nick of Time, U. S Marshals