Time Out says
A flashy David Cameron conservative, mind you. It’s pacy and exciting, trowelling on plenty of shoddy CGI slap and offering a brand new cast of characters. Gone is Reverend Gene Hackman haranguing his faithful herd from ballroom up to propellor shaft in favour of gambler Josh Lucas trying to sneak off to safety alone. He’s stopped by nine-year-old Conor (Jimmy Bennett) asking to tag along with his single mum (Jacinda Barrett), before being joined by Richard Dreyfuss, playing a recently dumped, suicidal gay architect, and Kurt Russell’s Robert Ramsey, both a former firefighter and former mayor of New York (!), who demands they first track down his teenage daughter Emmy Rossum and her boyfriend (Mike Vogel).
Where 1972’s crew conjured a rousing communality, 2006’s film offers a line-up of loners struggling to stay together and lacks the same momentum as a result. It also fails to tease out the contemporary resonances or adequately integrate emotion with action – why is Russell quizzing Rossum about her boyfriend while they’re zipping over a lake of flaming oil on a commando line? – and serves up a reactionary body count of one villain, one hero and two immigrants. Nevertheless, Petersen’s expert direction ensures it remains gripping, keeping the tension ratcheted right up and commendably steering it all home within 100 minutes.
Cast and crew