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Enemy Of The State (DVD)

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  • Excellent performances from Will Smith and Gene Hackman
  • A great story which is delivered brilliantly
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      28.05.2014 20:28
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      • "Thought provoking film"
      • "Excellent performances from Will Smith and Gene Hackman"
      • "A great story which is delivered brilliantly"

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      A great film which has superb performances by Will Smith and Gene Hackman

      Whenever I see Will Smith is to appear in a new film I have always taken notice and looked into the film to see what it is all about and when I read about a film called Enemy of the State I decided to look into what the story was and straight away I was hooked.

      The film sees the U.S. Congress moving to pass a new bill which will enable a dramatic increase in the use of surveillance but as with any bill of this sort there are those who remain opposed to such changes and when one of those who is against it, Congressman Phil Hammersley, is found dead it is confirmed that there is no foul play at hand but when the NSA (National Security Agency) discovers that a video is out there proving they killed Hammersley they must try to stop the video from getting out there. The video in question has been filmed completely by accident by wildlife researcher Daniel Zavitz who passes informs an underground journalist of the footage but whilst trying to get the information to the right people encounters the NSA agents and so must flee before it is too late. During the chase he ends up passing the information to an old friend of his named Robert Dean (played by Will Smith) who works as a labor lawyer and when Robert finds his life beginning to turn upside down he must try to figure out what is going on but can Edward Lyle (played by Gene Hackman) who is a retired NSA agent help him figure things out before it is too late?

      Overall for me this is a fantastic film which is brilliantly acted with both Will Smith and Gene Hackman giving superb performances that really do elevate this film to a whole other level. The film is thought provoking and simply superb in the depth it goes into but for me it is the style of the film and some of the camera work done that makes this stand out and really be a film I am able to say I love and highly recommend.

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      19.11.2013 11:57
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      Two great actors, helped along by a great idea .

      Enemy of the State, is a 1998 movie, with Will Smith playing the lead role. He plays a City lawyer and family man, who accidentally comes into possession of a video tape, which has on it members of the NSA, murdering a congressmen, although he does not no he has the tape.

      This movie explores and shows, the technology that American governments and organizations are using, to spy on there citizens. The police state has recently become a huge issue around the world, especially since the recent findings, of British and American intelligence, spying on other countries around the world.

      When the U.S congress tries to pass new legislation which will give the surveillance powers of the government, much more power. Robert Dean (Will Smith) finds himself on the wrong side of a rogue element within the U.S government. As a surveillance team moves in to find the tape Robert has, a unaware Robert is shocked by what is going on.

      When surveillance teams do not find what they are looking for, they are given orders from up above, to destroy Roberts life. His marriage is ruined, he loses his job, is set up for murder and is being chased by a group of men, and he has no reason why.
      Gene Hackman plays Roberts one friend Brill, he has been in Roberts position for the last 15 years, and for one reason or another, comes into contact with Robert. But can Robert achieve the incredible task, of fighting back against this super power, and get back his life.

      Will Smith does a brilliant job in this movie I thought, his acting is top class, and it is easy to see why he has become such a big star, after watching movies like this. I thought Gene Hackman does a brilliant job as well, I have always liked him, and I really enjoyed Gene in this movie as well. His acting is top form, and him and Will really have great chemistry on screen.

      Although this movie may have seemed unrealistic back in 1998 for many people, when it was first released, everybody now knows that this is old technology, and governments are much more advanced these days. Surveillance from space satellites is easy, we can do it on our phones, so it does make me wonder about the next piece of technology they have got, I am sure things will be very different again, in the next 14 to 15 years.

      This really is a great movie to watch, I never remembered enjoying that much back when it first came out, I think I was to young to appreciate the topic. But upon watching it recently I loved it, action packed stuff, which kept me interested from one scene to the next. So this is a really exciting film, and anybody who has never watched it, should certainly give it a watch.

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      09.03.2010 17:24
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      Entertaining enough, but not the best work from Bruckheimer / Scott

      Enemy of the State is a 1998 spy thriller directed by Tony Scott and starring Will Smith, Gene Hackman and Jon Voight and produced by Jerry Bruckheimer.

      -----------------------------
      The Plot:

      At the movie's opening we see reports of Congress attempting to pass a bill into legislation that gives Law Enforcement Agencies far expanded powers of surveillance and espionage, something thats proving to be controversial as basic Civil Liberties would be eroded.

      At the same time near a lake where he is walking his dog Congressman Phil Hammersley ( Jason Robards ) is meeting with NSA executive Thomas Reynolds ( Jon Voight ), Reynolds is trying to persuade the congressman to vote to pass the bill, while Hammersley is against it for a number of reasons, after it becomes clear that Reynolds will be unable to convince the congressman to change his mind he has Hammersley murdered by rogue NSA agents that are nearby, the murder is staged as a Heart Attack and Reynolds body is placed inside his car and pushed into the Lake.

      All seems to have gone according to plan, however it soon becomes clear to the NSA that the whole incident was recorded on videotape by a hidden Camera placed across the lake by Wildlife Researcher Daniel Zavitz ( Jason Lee ) who uses it to monitor geese migration, once Zavitz discovers whats on the tape and realises he's in grave danger he makes a copy and encodes it onto a videogame cartridge and starts to flee, just as the NSA agents begin their chase, after a long pursuit through the city streets he runs into a lingerie shop and plants the tape in a bag carried by Lawyer Robert Clayton Dean ( Will Smith ), shortly after he is killed by a firetruck.

      Dean is unaware of the tape being placed on his person but slowly finds his life unravelling as the NSA begin damage control and start to discredit him in the eventuality that he comes out in public with the tape, he finds his bank accounts cancelled, he loses his job over a scandal and his marriage comes under strain over rumours of an affair with a contact ( Lisa Bonet ), he enlists an acquaintance of his contact, a man named "brill" ( Gene Hackman ) who finds himself embroiled in the mess and the two men work together to clear their names and avoid capture and certain death.

      -----------------------------------------------------

      I have to start off by saying i'm a HUGE fan of alot of the elements of this movie, i'm an enormous fan of Jerry Bruckheimers movies and in particular when he collaborates with Tony Scott ( Top Gun and Crimson Tide are two examples ), i'm also a fan of Will Smith and think he's one of the finest actors in Hollywood today and truly believe he's a genuinely nice person, so on paper this movie should have blown me away and I should be drooling over this movie from start to finish.

      However thats not the case, while its an entertaining enough movie with a ( Fairly ) believable premise, the whole thing just doesn't seem to gel well enough for me, especially considering the depth of acting talent thats embedded within this movie, here let me list some of the actors .....Will Smith, Jon Voight, Jason Robards, Jack Black ( in an early role ), Gabriel Byrne and many more, its certainly an impressive cast and it has the visual and dramatic appeal of so many other Bruckheimer / Scott movies, however I think its main drawback is the sometimes unbelievable plot elements, I know you're meant to suspend your disbelief when you watch a movie, but there's such a thing as taking it too far, Will Smith should not have been able to evade that many resources for as long as he did, combine that with the fact that some of the technology just does not exist ( are we able to see 360 degree views with just one camera angle yet ??? )

      But it is an entertaining movie if you don't take it too seriously, the cast do a good job and play their parts well enough, but I got the feeling that some of them were simply phoning it in and collecting their paycheck.
      The Directing was also what is to be expected from Tony Scott and the whole thing has an appeal, especially to fans of Bruckheimers movies such as me, you may not place it at the top of the list but its certainly on the list and should be watched, for the more casual movie fan who doesn't care much about who the director or the producer are then this is still something that will certainly pass the time, just don't expect a modern masterpiece.

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        03.03.2010 17:38
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        A great flick

        Enemy of the State will always have a special place in my heart, being the first ever DVD that I bought when making the transition from video tapes. This in turn demonstrates the age of the movie, being released in the previous millennium, or 1998 to be more specific.

        It is in my own opinion an extremely good and classic film, however, watching it these days makes what was the cutting edge technology look pretty old school, with my mobile phone being far more high tech.


        ~~Theme~~

        This movie is an exciting action flick from start to finish, mixing thriller and suspense with conspiracy theory all about how the 'big brother' state is watching what we get up to all the time, and the manipulation of our political system for the benefit of personal gain for the few.


        ~~Plot~~

        The story orientates around the life of a high flying lawyer, Robert Clayton Dean, played by Will Smith who is currently working on a case regarding a Mob boss called Pintero breaking the conditions of his bail. To achieve this he uses a contact called Brill, played by Gene Hackman, who specialises in gaining evidence when needed.

        His life then suddenly takes a big turn for the worst when Christmas shopping he runs into a flustered old friend who passed on a video tape of a NSA agent assassinating a politician, without the knowledge of Dean. Before he knows it, he has become the subject of the NSA agents attention trying to regain possession of this tape before it becomes public. In an attempt to evade capture he seeks the aid of his contact Brill, who was a former member of the NSA, who uses his previous experience and skills to beat the agents at their own game.

        The movie then focuses around the evading capture and the attempt of Dean and Brill to regain their personal and professional lives, whilst bringing the assassins to justice.


        ~~Cast~~

        The main cast obviously consists of Will Smith and Gene Hackman, with several other class actors thrown in including Jon Voight, Seth Green and Jack Black in his early days.

        It was directed by Tony Scott and the movie was written by David Marconi.


        ~~Overall~~

        Overall, this is an extremely enjoyable movie, one which I would recommend to any audience, however, it is rated 15, but I would imagine this is mainly down to the language involved.

        This movie gets a Dooyoo rating from me of 5 stars out of 5.

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          20.02.2010 12:52
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          great thriller film

          Enemy of the state is a fantastic 1998 spy thriller film starring some very big names, the likes of Will Smith and Gene Hackman star in this one, so the acting talent is there, but also so it the story. I hadn't actually heard of this one before, I must have missed it when it came out but I ended up having it on DVD a couple of years ago and gave it a watch, and really enjoyed it.

          The movie starts with a new bill trying to be passed for introducing more a new kind of surveillance system that uses satellites, however when a congressman doesn't allow the politician Thomas Reynolds his wish to have this system in place, he has him killed. However this murder was caught on tape, and when Robert Clayton Dean, a high flyer lawyer played by Will Smith bumps into an old friend in a shop, he doesn't realise why he is in such a rush and looks very agitated.

          This man slips Dean the disk that contains the murder before he flees where he is soon murdered himself by the NSA team. Now with this disk himself, he must now team together with a man named Brill who tells him he has something the NSA want so they then need to come up with an idea to help Reynolds get caught, letting them get back of with their own lives.

          I really enjoyed this film a lot, the acting is really great all the way through and the story line is strong, I really like thrillers with government conspiracies as it really gives off a powerful force, and its good to see how people could get around this and try to survive against all odds.

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          17.12.2009 14:54
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          Plenty of action and great performance by Will Smith

          A Congressman is murdered when he refuses to cooperate with a politician, Thomas Reynolds. Unfortunately, the whole incident is accidentally filmed by a journalist who, when he realises what he has, makes a copy of the film. He is murdered because of it, but not before he has passed a disc on to his friend, successful lawyer Robert Clayton Dean. At first, Dean doesn't realise what his friend has done and is bemused by all the attention that he is getting. However, he soon catches on and uses his contacts to get himself out of trouble. When one of them dies, however, Dean soon decides that he is not going down without a fight. Will he ever be able to return to his happily married family life?

          There are a number of excellent performances in this film, but the best is undoubtedly from the lead actor, Will Smith, who plays Robert Dean. Although the role came relatively early in Will Smith's career (the film was made back in 1998), his potential as a leading man is very clear here. The character is given some substance with his family life, which shows him as a good husband (although not a perfect one) and father, making him instantly likeable. Smith is able to switch across into the role of a confused, then angry and then determined man very easily and convincingly, and manages to hold the whole film together with very little difficulty.

          Smith does have plenty of help with a great support cast though. Gene Hackman plays Brill, one of the contacts Dean turns to, and although the role isn't Hackman's best (simply because he doesn't have a large enough role), he does add a touch of class. Jon Voight plays Reynolds and is great as an obnoxious, greedy, nasty piece of work. The lovely Lisa Bonet (The Cosby Show) plays another of Smith's contacts and Regina King (24) plays his wife - the latter is particularly good as a woman confused by her husband's motives. The list goes on, with Jason Lee playing the journalist who dies and Jack Black and Barry Pepper playing Reynolds' men. It is clear that appearing in this film did none of the actors' reputation any harm - over ten years on, they are virtually all doing rather well in their own right.

          This is an action thriller and there is most certainly plenty of action. In fact, it barely stops. Yet, unlike some thrillers, the story is well told in that it is always clear what is going on. Often films of this genre forgo the story for action, making it hard to understand what role all the characters have. The film is rather long, at over two hours, yet although that is a good half hour longer than my usual cut off point for films, I really felt that this one needed to be as long as it is. Certainly, I didn't find myself bored at any point; far from it, I was glued to the screen for most of the film.

          The production is tight and looks fantastic - but then it should do as, according to wikipedia, the budget was $90 million. Much of the tracking that Reynolds' team carry out while following Dean is, of course, highly technical, and the way that it is shown is easy on the eye and clear, while showing off technical capabilities. There are an awful lot of stunts within the film, including Jason Lee on a bike being chased in a Washington rush hour by Reynolds' goons and Will Smith apparently hanging off the high-floor balcony of a hotel room. All are excellent quality and, although I'm sure there were plenty of stunt men involved, it all looks very convincing. There is a lot of violence in the film, as well as bad language, which makes it unsuitable for children - the rating of 15 is about right.

          I've read a lot of criticism about the technical side of the film, with people claiming that certain aspects aren't quite right or aren't possible at all. I honestly don't think this is important. The point the film is trying to make is that the government can put tabs on each and every one of us with very little difficulty. However, I think the key word there is 'can' - I really doubt that the money or inclination exists to put such a surveillance on anyone but the most potentially dangerous. What the film does show is that, even though it is ten years old, the same old conspiracy theories are still in place today. Whether we choose to believe these theories is down to personal choice, and, I guess, personal experience!

          There are a number of extras with the DVD. There's a making of documentary, which is about 30 minutes - it's interesting in parts, although is perhaps a little too long and too scare-mongering for my liking. Then there's a short documentary on the ending and how that was filmed, which is much more manageable at under 15 minutes, but is really only for those interested in the production side of films. Finally, there are a collection of deleted scenes and the theatrical trailer.

          I was very impressed by this film. I liked the story, the pace, the acting - everything about it and I'm just sorry that I haven't seen it before. I'm always put off by Hollywood blockbusters, because they so often disappoint, but in this case, I admit I was wrong. Anyone who enjoys a good thriller should be more than happy with the film - so long as they don't take it as seriously as some people apparently do. Recommended.

          The DVD is available from play.com for £3.99.

          Classification: 15

          Running time: 132 minutes

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            18.09.2009 12:31
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            Good film, shame about the ending

            Enemy of the state is a film starring Will Smith as a lawyer caught up in a givernment conspiracy looking for a way to get his lfe back on track, with support from Gene Hackman, Jon Voight, Barry Pepper, Jack Black, Jason Lee, Habriel Byrne plus many many more support from well known actors, the film was released in 1998 and is a very '24' type film, I wouldn't be surprised if the writers got their idea from this film (although unlikely).

            The film starts as a bill to push through the idea of integrating and expanding the surveillance powers of law enforcemanet into homes and elsewhere is being played through, Phil Hammersly is against the idea, suggesting it's invasion of privacy, Voights character, Reynolds, however thinks the idea should be put through. The death of Hammersly seems an unfortunate accident when they find his car and body in the lake, that is until A wildlife researched with a very well placed video camera managed to find out the truth...

            The film continues as the CIA try to track down the man with the video tape who inadvertantly bumps into Robert Dean, Smith, with nowhere to go he places the tape in Deans shopping bags and makes a run for it, for the next 2 hours are a roller coaster, Dean completley unaware why his world is being turned upside down, scandals about him in the papers, people following him and ruining his family. With the help of a few people along the way he discovers what he has gotten into and needs to get himself out, will the truth be exposed and will Dean recover from the sleeze thats been written about him...?

            This film had a very 24 feel to it as I mentioned earlier, it's not as good as any 24 episode but then again the format is very different and the characters and actors are very different, what I liked about this film was the lack of explosions and special effects, in most Hollywood films they seem to go over the top, yes there are explosions but not beyond what is needed unlike these days when the filmmakers assume the audience just loves big fire, everywhere...all the time. The film plays on the tension of the CIA trying their all to find the tape, to ruin Dean and cover up the conspiracy as well as the desperation of Dean trying to piece together exactly what is happening to his life. The film is great at portraying the urgency in both Dean and the CIA who are both in a race against time. For me the first hour and a half of this film was very good, however I didn't like the last 20 minutes or so I must say, the ending especially I thought was pretty awful, they seemed to take a very famous film ending, expand it ten fold and the scene ending up being ridiculous, stupid and horrible to watch...all that, not going over the top stuff I was talking about earlier is bought all back for the finale which was pretty unrealistic and seemed a bit of a cop out for me, it's as if the writers had no clever way of ending the film, it also ended very quickly with very little post event clarification or analysis.

            The acting in this film was pretty good, it's got alot of famous actors, least of all Voight, Smith and Hackman, there's support from 10+ other very well known actors playing smaller roles within the CIA and Deans life. Smith I prefer in his more serious roles of Pursuit of Happyness, Seven Pounds etc. However he is pretty good in this film, I'm not a huge fan of actors like him in actions/thrillers but definatly thought he was the best in this film. Hackman I didn't think was best for his role, he played it competently enough but never really felt as though he suited his role. Voight (who funnily enough went on to play a VERY similar character in 24) played a good villain trying to cover up the conspiracy. The support all round was pretty good, cameo's from Jack Black, Barry Pepper and Jason Lee didn't go unnoticed.

            The soundtrack is limited, the only music throughout the film really is the classic action/thriller music that increases the tension throughout chase scenes or close miss scenes, there wasn't any 'real' music through the film although that wasn't a bad thing for me. The special features were ok, with a couple of special featurettes as well as the classic deleted scenes, extended scenes etc. These 2 aspects were limited but not in a bad way, the soundtrack fitted the film and the special features weren't too limited.

            Overall, I thought this film was pretty good, I was going to give it a very respectable 4 out of 5 up until about 15/20 minutes from the end when the film turned, the ending for me was terrible, a cop out and not exactly the clever twist or ending I had expected. The film for the first hour and a half however is a very good watch, tension throughout and the viewer has a sense of hurt for Smiths character who can seem to do nothing to stop his life from spiralling and he has no idea why. The film was bordering on a 5 during these moments of the film although for some reason I never felt inclined to give it a 5, perhaps because there's just 'something' that the very very best films have, this didn't but I don't know what it was, it was a generic hollywood action/thriller, thats is perhaps one very good reason I didn'r see anything 'special' in this film. However the ending gave it a poorer mark then it should have been. If you can somehow change the ending then this is a very good film and very easy to watch, however, if, like most of us, you can;t somehow change the ending, perhaps end it early or just wait for a poor ending and have no expectation...or, you may even like the ending.

            Good film ruined by a poor, unclever, cop out ending.

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            07.08.2009 18:08
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            Perfect in Bluray

            A real classic from the 90s, surrounded by now outdated technologies and a corrupt US government.

            If ever there was a film that still deserves to be bought, this is it.
            Let's do a plot run through... It follows a lawyer (Will Smith) who was in the wrong place at the wrong time. A nature researcher has witnessed the murder of a politician and has the video evidence to prove it; before he can get away he is run over by a fire truck handing the incriminating video to the lawyer, Robert Clayton Dean. Basically he is unaware of this and is hunted down by the government who tries to take his credibility if he decides to go public.

            I think this is one of Will Smith's greatest achievements and it is a really good 2hr long film. It has a great story line and a really good set of actors that make each and every character they play come to life so that they are believable especially Gene Hackman.
            I really do believe that even an oldish film like this deserves Bluray and my usual question of "Is it worth getting on Bluray"? has to be answered with a definite, yes. There are some really great moments in this film that make it worth getting in HD and with a really good transfer it does do the film justice.

            Overall a classic film from the 90s that, in my opinion, deserves the enhancement HD brings to the film.

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            02.08.2009 22:18
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            Good action film with an attempt to provoke thought

            Robert Dean (Will Smith) is unwittingly thrust into a world of chaos after being given a film that has captured a politically driven murder. His only ally is a jaded ex government operative (Gene Hackman) who is extremely reluctant to get involved. With a rogue government operation against him, Dean struggles to stay alive, stay innocent and find a way to regain his life and family.

            Sometimes in this movie, Smith portrays his character with a little too much stupidity and naivety. Considering he is a high powered crime lawyer, I find it amusing that the character is useless against the unknown. But I suppose that makes his progression and the turning tables on the government more impressive.

            I especially liked the use of Seth Green and Jack Black in supporting roles, a little novelty that was much appreciated.

            There is an extremely gory bit in the movie that shocks and keeps you alert during the rest of the action, and there is plenty of action. In fact, there is very rarely a dull moment, the urgency of the characters predicament is well portrayed in the fast moving shots and pace of the movie.

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            02.07.2009 10:22
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            Worth a watch, especially for Mr Smith fans ;)

            Enemy Of The State was released in 1997, though to watch it now it doesn't seem to have aged. It's rated certificate 15 as there's violence and some swearing, though it all seems to flow well within the film, rather than just chucking it some blood and foul language because they felt like it.

            Directed by Tony Scott, you would expect a high quality movie, and that's what you get. Scott, who has directed numerous highly-rated films such as Man On Fire and Top Gun, uses his talents well to produce Enemy Of The State in an energetic and well-polished fashion.

            In addition superb direction is a top-notch cast, including Will Smith, Gene Hackman, Jon Voigt and Regina King. Although a good cast doesn't necessarily equate to a decent film, I thought the performances helped to pull the storyline through and deliver a very watchable film. I should also add that Jack Black has a small part in this; small enough not to tip those who hate him over the edge, but big enough for those who like him to get to see him shine as a computer geek.

            The story is based on government agents, family struggles, undercover operations, police and the notion of a 'big brother' state. Robert Clayton Dean, a lawyer played by Will Smith, becomes the target of the feds following an unfortunate and unlikely meeting with a guy whilst out shopping for christmas presents for his family. Although others suspect he's in possession of something highly significant, Dean is unaware he actually has a recording of a congressman's assassination. Once Dean is the centre of the investigation to locate this tape, we see how much power the feds have over society by means of 'big brother' methods, such as bugging clothing and hidden cameras. The film then takes an 'action-packed' pace as he tries to protect himself and his family (a wife and son) and solve the problem of the incriminating tape.

            It may sound slightly too political and governmental, but the film is made easy to watch and is clear enough so as to avoid confusion. The pace is just right; there's action, running and shooting, but there's also a few quieter moments which make the movie easy to digest. Thanks to Smith, and Hackman to an extent, humour is thoughtfully interjected at the right moments. I guess it depends on how much you like Will Smith, but he's hard not to like when he pulls off such good performances. His humour and ease behind the camera makes the film more multi-faceted, rather than just a 'cops with guns' escapade.

            The film is 127 minutes in total, which seemed to fly by when I watched it because, as I've said, the film flows very well and is easy to watch. Although it requires some concentration (which makes a nice change to many dumb cops with guns movies these days), it is able to capture your attention and spark your interest enough to keep you watching.

            An unrated and extended cut is also available, priced at £4.48 on Amazon. For under £5, it's a film I would definitely recommend. Special features on DVD include some deleted scenes, a 'making of' featurette and some behind the scenes clips. That said, as it was only on the television recently it will no doubt be on again in the future. Definitely worth a watch; it may not be the most interesting plot you've ever come across and it wont be everyone's cup of tea, but it is a quality and notorious film nonetheless.

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              30.06.2009 01:41
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              A kinetic, well acted thriller

              Along with Peter Weir's superb film The Truman Show, 1998's Enemy of the State is a superb and relevant examination of a panoptic surveillance model that has become a very real fear for many, that the government, with the likes of satelite surveillance and the Patriot Act in America, have every action and transaction they partake in documented and recorded.

              Although director Tony Scott is often criticised for his incredibly lavish, hyperkinetic visual style and direction, it is perhaps all too appropriate that he directs a film about the dangers of advanced technology. His over the top direction, with its insistence on quick fire editing, is something of a facsimile of the film's very ideas, and the perfect way to mediate the film's intelligent ideas to a mainstream moviegoing public.

              After witnessing an old college friend killed whilst pursued by government officials, Robert Clayton Dean (Will Smith) is himself pursued by government G-Men, who believe that he retains sensitive information passed to him by his departed friend. To this effect, the film demonstrates how the government can make your life a living Hell if you cross them, cancelling your cards, bugging your home, tapping your calls, and examining your telephone transactions. Meanwhile, NSA head Thomas Reynolds (Jon Voight) is the sleazy man tasked with running the operations to take Dean down, commanding a team of grunts, including an appearance by character actor Barry Pepper, and a collective of geeks, with appearances from Seth Green, Jack Black and Jamie Kennedy.

              It is fair to say that the film runs along an incredibly liberal tangent, which may dissuade some from watching it. However, it does state the conservative intentions to an extent, and it ultimately is a top-notch political thriller that, whilst in no way subtle, delivers exhilerating set pieces and plenty of humour, thanks to Tony Scott's kinetic direction and solid performances from Will Smith, Gene Hackman, and John Voight.

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              28.06.2009 18:49
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              A must-see thriller

              Family man Robert Clayton Dean (Will Smith) is an attorney at law who's life is about to change dramatically without him even having to lift a finger...

              While buying lingerie for his wife Carla (Regina King) he bumps into a panic stricken college friend, all the man has time to say is help before slipping something in Robert's bag unnoticed and fleeing only to be killed by a passing fire truck. It soon becomes apparent to Robert that his old friend was on the run from the government and when a couple of NSA Agents visit his house asking strange questions he becomes understandably anxious.

              Robert thinks that it's a case of mistaken identity but he soon realises that these are rogue NSA Agents that will do anything to get what Robert has, when Robert finally discovers what it is that he has possession of he immediately realises that his and his families lives are in grave danger, can he find a way to stop this before it's too late?

              This film is now approximately 11 years old yet it's still relevant in today's society, more so than ever before. This film stretches further than just being a simple corrupt government thriller, it strikes paranoia into it's viewers by making you think twice about how much privacy we all actually have. This film seems so contrived from afar but when you actually watch it, it will eventually hit home at how realistic it may be. Of course some of the technology used was a bit before it's time but in theory we could all be under surveillance all our lives and have no idea whatsoever about it.

              This is another masterpiece directed and produced by the superstar pairing of Tony Scott and Jerry Bruckheimer, Tony Scott of course being famed for his magnificent thrillers and Jerry Bruckheimer being renowned for his brilliant films in general! With a behind the scenes team like this and an in front of the camera team including Will Smith, Gene Hackman and Jon Voight this film was practically already a monster hit before it was even released.

              Luckily the film managed to live up to the surrounding hype as a result of it's all star cast. The film begins with the premeditated murder of a congressman which is under the command of Jon Voight. Voight is brilliant in these types of roles and plays a great villain in which is seemingly effortless for him as he always comes across as so laid back and sure of his remarkable talents as an actor. Jon Voight never seems to be the forefront of a movie, instead choosing to take more of a backseat role and letting the main characters steal the show. I think it's admirable when an actor or actress knows their strengths and plays to them, with Jon Voight it's with supporting roles.

              In Enemy Of The State we once again get to witness just why the whole world loves Will Smith, he's definitely my favourite actor and it's just impossible not to like him. He's one of those actors that can be loved and lusted after by women but also adored by men too which is down to the film roles that he's chosen over the years (Bad Boys, Men In Black). Will Smith is definitely one of, if not the most versatile actor in Hollywood at the moment and he rarely makes a bad film. Throughout this film his character remains sincere and believable and the way he evokes emotion such as panic and paranoia is superb, he was without doubt the best thing in the film.

              His co-star played by Gene Hackman is also good, he's really plausible in his role and manages to change the audiences perception on him with clear straightforwardness. Regina King plays Will Smith's wife, she's great in her role and evokes real emotion in her character, she also provides the audience with some much needed comedy which was highly appreciated.

              On the face of it, you'd think that Enemy Of The State is one of those thrillers with an overly complicated plot and so many sub plots that it's impossible to keep up with, I had initially thought that it was going to be one of those films that relies on the action to keep the audiences attention and pray to God that at least some of them follow the plot! Enemy Of The State is different though, it has a strong, conceivable and best of all fathomable plot line which makes it easy for the viewer to become instantly captured by it all.

              The action in this film is sublime but luckily they don't rely on it to carry the film, the story manages to metaphorically stand up for itself which is a big achievement to the writers. This is a really fast paced film that will keep you hooked from start to finish, even when the action has died down it's never long until something else happens which will result in Will Smith either undressing and climbing around the outside walls of a posh hotel, have him weaving in and of trains and generally just getting up to the usual mischief that he does in his films!

              I was highly impressed with Enemy Of The State as it kept me on the edge of your seat from start to finish and at no point does it become predictable. My only problem with this was it's running time of 131 minutes, it was a bit long for the story itself and at times you felt like some of the scenes were merely added as a form of killing time yet even these scenes manage to entertain you so there's really no downsides when it comes to this film.

              The DVD is available from play.com for £4.99

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                06.04.2009 16:03
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                Enemy of the State

                Enemy of the State is an action thriller released in year 1998. Movie was directed by Tony Scott and produced by Jerry Bruckheimer. The screenplay and script was written by David Marconi. This is a story of NSA agent who murdered a political person and tries to destroy the proofs and witnesses.

                Star Cast:

                Will Smith portrays Robert Clayton Dean, an attorney in Washington.
                Barry Pepper plays a role of David Pratt.
                Lisa Bonet plays a role of Rachel Banks, ex-girlfriend of Clayton.
                Jon Voight portrays Thomas Brain Reynolds.
                Gene Hackman portrays Edward Brill Lyle, a retired NSA agent.
                Jason Lee plays a role of Daniel Leon Zavitz.

                Plot Summary:

                In Washington DC the law maker wants to pass a bill to expand his powers but Phil Hammersly is against this. The NSA agents of Thomas Reynolds kill Phil and make the body to seem like a genuine death by heart attack. Daniel Zavitz camera's records this entire incident. He copies the video in computer and arrives at his friend Robert Clayton's house. Here NSA agents are tracking Zavitz. Zavitz left the video tape in Clayton's bag and while running he is killed by truck and NSA agents find the card of Clayton in his pocket. Agents are looking for video and come to his house. They do not find the tape and NSA blurs a false story about him that he had a relationship with Rachel. His wife throws him out of her house and he is fired from the firm. Now he is in bog trouble. With the help of Rachel he meets Brill, a retired agent of NSA. Rachel is killed by the Reynolds's men and Clayton and Brill finds a video but afterwards video is destroyed by the agents. Later Clayton and Brill are also captured. Now what happens next? Who is behind this conspiracy? Why NSA agents are also involved in this conspiracy? What happens to Clayton and Brill? Do they find the copy of the tape? To know all the answers watch "Enemy of the State."

                My Views and Perspective:

                Plot and Storyline
                The movie is basically a conspiracy thriller. The story is slow in starting but after some time story geared up and once it gets going it starts moving very fast. The plot is intelligent and need brains to watch. There are many chase sequences in the plot and the game of cat and mouse is running throughout the movie. The plot is quite realistic and ending is reasonable. One thing is sure that after watching this movie you will get to know that how deep government can go for the surveillance. You will see the power of government and its very easy to track and tap anyone, how much they are corrupted and how can they use their power to bring down the individual.

                Characters and Performances
                Hackman's character is very powerful and solid. Hackman is a perfect man for this role and he deserves a lot of praise. I don't like Will smith but in this movie he is terrific but I think he could have done better. He is known for his humor but he looks little bit tensed in the movie in front of the classic actor Hackman. So you can imagine the performance delivered by Hackman of your own. The lead star of the movie is Will Smith but Hackman steal the screen and the credit goes to him in making the movie successful although he doesn't appear in the first half and hour of the movie. There are many known faces in the movie in very small parts like Lisa Bonet and Jason Lee. There performances did not make any such difference in the movie but as a villain Jon Voight is wonderful.

                Direction
                After watching Tony Scott's True Romance I want to try another movie of him and I found Enemy of the State. He directed this movie perfectly and shows that he is one of the best. Just like True Romance he fills the movie with plenty of action, chase sequences and thrill.

                Visuals and Best Scenes
                There are some excellent camerawork involved in the movie. They used some real pictures and spy cameras to show the drop down views of some scenes and these scenes will make you feel like a hard edged. There are lots of high technology scenes and I was not able to understand some of them. The chase scene when Clayton and Brill met for first time. I like this sequence just because it is full of action. Some funny scenes are also in the movie. Don't miss the hotel scene, the funniest part of the movie.

                Movie is definitely better than it could have been. Movie has everything that I expect and it was one of the big blockbusters of 1998. If you like action, thriller and conspiracies than I am sure this movie will not disappoint you. That's all I can give you .Thanks for the reading.

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                  04.03.2009 21:20
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                  well worth a watch

                  Overview
                  ------------
                  This is one of my favourite Jerry Bruckheimer action films. This film is about an innocent man who has been accidentally caught up in political corruption. This film is great if you like action movies with a little comedy and romance. It is a clever film which really makes you think.

                  Story
                  ------
                  Robert Clayton Dean, played by Will Smith, is a devoted father, husband, and attorney shopping for a sexy gift for his wife. What he doesn't know is that he was given a videotape from a friend (Jason Lee) regarding the recent murder of a U.S. senator led by corrupt National Security Agency official Thomas Reynolds (Jon Voight). Soon Reynolds is after Dean to cover his tracks and frame Dean for Rachel's murder. Since Dean doesnt know much about high-tech gadgetry, he needs the aid of ex-intelligence operative Brill (Gene Hackman).

                  Characters
                  ---------------
                  I think the acting in this film is really good. Both Will Smith and Gene Hackman play their characters fantastically, although the Will Smith character is very similar to other characters he has played in the past.

                  Value
                  --------
                  This DVD can be picked up for just a few £ now and if you buy it online dont forget to use a cashback site to get money back on your purchase. This film is definately woeth buying.

                  Overall
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                  I would give this film 9/10 as i think its really easy to watch - not too serious but not crazy to be unbelievable. It is suitable for most groups of people.

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                    18.02.2009 18:52
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                    It's quickly paced, easy on the eye, and fascinatingly clever in its creation of paranoia.

                    People tend to say I'm paranoid. With films like Enemy of the State I guess I have a reason to be. The conspiracy theories about NSA violations were by no means a new topic when this film was released back in 1998, but they were certainly portrayed in a very gripping and entertaining manner, forcing them to be on my mind ever since.

                    Will Smith is one of those actors that very rarely fails to impress me. Here, he stars as Robert Clayton Dean, a Washington attorney, who gets passed a video tape revealing the murder of a U.S. senator, which the NSA are desperate to retrieve in order to cover their tracks. Using a host of fascinating surveillance gadgets they do everything within their power to get inside Dean's life and locate the whereabouts of the tape; they plant tracker bugs in his clothes, listen into his conversations with microphones, and track his every move via cameras. Smith is great as he brings an element of fun to the whole conspiracy theory regarding the "Government constantly watching us": he is the typical nice guy, making subtle jokes, with really no clue about the shadow government's capabilities. He still has his trademark Fresh Prince charm, but with an added maturity that would rank him as a serious actor for his forthcoming films.

                    Gene Hackman is also fascinating as Brill, the former Agency employee, who uses his knowledge to assist Dean along the way. Together, they eventually fight back against the people that are chasing them; on the whole, this is your typical cat and mouse thriller, injected with high energy moments of action to keep you fully entertained throughout.

                    The technology showcased in Enemy of the State never goes quite to the extreme that it is completely unbelievable; everything is done with a sense of realism, in a deliberate attempt to make us think: Are we really being watched?, Does the government have a right to invade our privacy if they think we're a criminal?, And should we fear for our own safety?

                    Combining simple entertainment and a starting point for the evening's topical banter, Enemy of the State is an overall must see for action junkies and curious individuals. It's quickly paced, easy on the eye, and fascinatingly clever in its creation of paranoia.

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