Safe House (1998)

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Safe House (1998) Poster

A psychological thriller. Mace Sowell, an ex-intelligence operative whose past government activities catches up with him, faces his own mortality, in the shape of the on-set of Alzheimer's ... See full summary »


7/10
2,275

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  • Patrick Stewart and Kimberly Williams-Paisley in Safe House (1998)
  • Safe House (1998)
  • Safe House (1998)
  • Safe House (1998)
  • Safe House (1998)
  • Safe House (1998)

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29 November 2003 | downyokp
8
| Some movies are epics, this one's a short story
I will start by admitting that I'm a Star Trek fan, and in particular a Next Gen fan. So yes, I have a bias towards liking Stewart, although I think most can agree he is a skilled actor.

That concession aside, and as my summary suggests, this is not an epic movie, just a short story. I loved the set design, which was quite clever; where most movies tend to create the impression of big houses and locales, this one manages to create the impression of close spaces, as appropriate for a fortress in suburbia.

You will continue to guess at whether or not Stewart's paranoia is justified or just symptoms of Alzheimer's until the very end. Stewart is well fitted for the part, or at the very least he was convincing to me. I think this particular says something since I'm used to seeing him as Captain Picard.

I wouldn't try to sell this off as an accurate portrayal of how DIA operatives act when they retire. I wouldn't know anything about that. I don't even know if there is such a thing as the DIA.

What I will say is that the movie is best taken as a diversion, a fun romp that keeps you interested, but it doesn't grip you like an epic. Perhaps rightly so, since the subject matter doesn't fit an epic movie anyway.

As a final note, I still don't see anything wrong with genre mixing. Why can't you have a drama that's funny, or a comedy with serious action, or whatever it is you want to blend? If it works it works, if it doesn't it doesn't, and it works for me here. (See as an example "The Big Hit," which the writer called a "hip-hop comic Hong Kong action movie") This movie is a small little tidbit, to be taken and enjoyed as such. 8/10

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