Reviewed by Russell Lutz
Rating: 9 Beans
harlie Sheen and Linda Hamilton must have the most inconsistent careers in show business. Each has done exceptional work ("Wall Street" and "Platoon" for Sheen, the Terminator films and TV's "Beauty and the Beast" for Hamilton) and each has been in inexcusably bad trash. "Black Moon Rising" and "Terminal Velocity" come to mind (despite the fact that I really enjoyed "Velocity").
Knowing that, the fact that "Shadow Conspiracy" is the WORST film either has ever been in is truly awesome. In fact, this film is chock full of good performers at their worst. Sam Waterston ("Law and Order") is a more wooden president than Gore could ever be. Donald Sutherland ("JFK") is a morally ambiguous (until the end, at least) governmental mentor to Charlie Sheen: not really a stretch for him. Nicholas Turturro ("NYPD Blue") is laughably bad as a motor-mouth surveillance expert. And last, but not least, Stephen Lang plays a hit man so blandly that Bruce Willis's "Jackal" shows him up.
Sheen plays an advisor to the President, in fact the only one the President will listen to! The "plot" revolves around a conspiracy that a friend of Sheen's uncovers. This friend is (predictably) shot before he can divulge the details... right in front of Sheen! (Once revealed, the conspiracy is so amazingly banal that I felt like punching the screenwriter.) Sheen then pulls Hamilton's newspaper reporter character into the melee, allowing her to dodge improbable assassination attempts as well, as they barrel headlong into a finale that belongs in a Leslie Nielsen picture, not a political thriller.
The true student of the Bad Film should not miss this one.
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