"Movie Magazine International" Review -- Air Date: Week Of 10/11/95

By John A. Lavin

Every once in a long while, a film explodes on the movie scene, altering all our perceptions as it forces us to take a good, lasting look at ourselves. We're transformed by the vision of life on the screen as we can feel our tenuous grasp of reality begin to slip away, and.....Oh, who am I trying to kid? I'm just searching for excuses to like "macho man" director Richard Donner's new movie, "Assassins", easily one of the mostest, Testosteronest, alpha-malest movies I've seen in ages.

Don't search for the higher meaning of life in this little baby. Nosiree, when you view "Assassins", what you get is two solid hours of sweating, bullet-ridden maleness that just doesn't quit. Sylvester Stallone plays Robert Rath, the best assassin in the business. He gets all the top, big money jobs, and never misses his target. One day, as he goes about his nasty living, fellow assassin Antonio Banderas jumps in and steals the kill from him. Naturally, this upsets our favorite "poet-warrior", setting up a two hour, gun blazing showdown between the two hit-men. Yes, there is a subplot involving a female computer hacker and a floppy disc full of "secret" information, but who cares?

No, movie fans, there are several reasons to see this movie that don't really involve "film school" concepts like plot, conflict, characterization, or thematic impact. See "Assassins" because you can watch as Sylvester Stallone struggles to overcome the demons of his nature. Marvel as "bad assassin" Antonio Banderas says lines like "Joo are getteeng old, mangh. Maybe it's time for a new numbair wone!" Sit in stunned amazement as the body count steadily rises, and major characters do incredibly stupid things, just to keep the whole thing moving steadily along.

And, of course, there's the mandatory "surprise" ending that's as predictable as the outcome of your last big Mexican meal. What else can I say? "Assassins" offers you all the action of director Richard Donner's "Lethal Weapon" series, only without the annoying "Road to Zanzibar" cop buddy interplay that just gets in the way of the action. So, before you cave in to the "sensitive" side of your nature and go to see that "American Quilt" movie, do yourself a favor. Throw on some Brut and check out "Assassins".

Copyright 1995 John A. Lavin

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