Opening with archive footage of the Reagan assassination attempt, this action thriller acknowledges its star’s advancing years by locating his career highpoint in the distant past (a little like the Clint Eastwood picture ‘In the Line of Fire’). But once on the run Douglas proves there’s life in the old dog yet, strutting his virile stuff to evade his secret-service pursuers while conducting an affair with the First Lady (Kim Basinger).
Although some of the action scenes are briskly executed, this is confusing, overheated nonsense, with a strained and humourless performance from Douglas, whose main point of interest is his suspiciously smooth skin (at least Eastwood had real wrinkles). Sutherland offers solid support, but his presence only reminds you how much better ‘24’ does this kind of on-the-run conspiracy thriller. Its relentless glorification of the Presidential Office is grating, especially given the film’s hostility to all things non-American, notably a ragbag of villainous foreigners (Eastern Europeans, Cockneys and South Americans ) and Canadian peaceniks (boo hiss!). Probably the trashiest thing Douglas has done since dancing in that V-neck with Sharon Stone.