An enjoyably slick if not unfamiliar thriller (by Jeff Maguire) in which the fiendishly brilliant psycho-killer repeatedly taunts the cop to man-to-man confrontation. As Secret Service agent Horrigan, Eastwood is as outspokenly independent as ever: at odds with superiors, caught in a teasing, argumentative romance with colleague Lilly Raines (Russo), and determined to do his job. This time, however, he's haunted by the past (30 years ago he failed to stop the bullet that killed Kennedy) and when he learns that a would-be assassin (Malkovich) has plans for the current Presidential elections, professional duty provides the opportunity for personal redemption or personal failure. Directing each set-piece for all he's worth, Petersen highlights the plot with vivid details and invests several of the action sequences with moral/psychological dimensions. He's helped no end by Malkovich, and by his lead, whose fine, easy performance extends even to tears.
Cast and crew
Fred Dalton Thomas