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The 100




Virtuosity
(1995)
Reviewed by John Trager
Rating: 6 Beans

enzel Washington and Russell Crowe face off in this futuristic action flick about a Virtual Reality simulacrum that comes to life via nanotechnology. Washington is an ex-cop who was imprisoned for avenging himself upon Crowe after Crowe caps his family. Crowe then returns to "life" and freedom via this VR construct. The VR construct is a conglomeration of a helluva lot of bad guys, all rolled up into one, yet somehow, Washington's nemesis dominates, and hence, the only person who can stop SID (which stands for Sadistic, Intelligent, and Dangerous, in case you were wondering) is the ex-con Washington.

First off, I have to admit that the special effects are pretty good, as was the sound. The movie itself, however was horrible. The plot was terrible, the dialogue almost frightening in how simplistic and abrupt it was, and even the action sequences seemed to drag a bit by the end.

The special properties imparted to the constructed SID body (remember, the nanotechnology) were incredibly reminiscent of T2. The VR scenes, though visually interesting, were best described as cliche. Chase scenes and gunfights are similarly predictable (even to the classic "Losing the quarry onto the departing train" gambit).

Really, the brightest point in this sorry movie
came from a couple of the interesting visuals early on, and of course, the required random views of physically attractive people (of both sexes, actually). Crowe shows his Aussie tail for the benefit of the female watchers, Denzel dresses all in leather for a little while, and Kelly Lynch brightens the screen for the men. Additionally, Traci Lords makes a quick cameo (yum).

If you're into gratuitous violence, this movie will have a bit more appeal for you. And some of the hokier scenes possess their own unique charm (SID toying with becoming a TV star, for instance). However, overall this is a stinker that really isn't quite bad enough to recommend it as B, even. It's the kind of movie that goes best at the 7 am shift of an all night movie marathon.






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