Ossus Library Index Action Movie Index

THE FUGITIVE

Directed by Andrew Davis (1993, Warner Bros.)
Starring Harrison Ford, Tommy Lee Jones, Sela Ward, and Andreas Katsulas

A convicted man escapes and hunts for his wife's real killer, a one-armed man.

 

 

4 stars

May 17th, 2009 on DVD for the third time time

 
    I can't believe how well this movie holds up after so much time. It really works on many levels. Especially after all the gut-wrenching scenes in so many other films, this one plays more as a drama, with no real car chases, and the Fugitive actually gets caught twice. I think everybody did a great job in this movie.  

 

4 stars

February 4th, 2001 on TV for the second time

 
    A really fun, desperate, action-packed adventure where we really want the "convicted felon" to escape. Truly engaging, and the lead actors were in their prime. 

Ah, I finally have the whole "Fugitive trilogy" on this site! The same actors portrayed the same characters in U.S. Marshals, and then Tommy Lee Jones played the same type of character in the same sort of situation in Double Jeopardy. Both of those movies are inferior to this one. 

Every scene in this movie adds something to the story. Every character thinks, and the two leads outthink each other -or try to. There is only one place in the whole movie that cried out fake. That is when Kimble is running for the doors after seeing the prisoner, and Gerard is chasing after him. The alarm goes, and Kimble continues running, past guards, security fences that are closing too slowly to stop him, and finally through bullet-proof doors. If the guards were that lax, and the doors that slow to close, I wonder how many other fugitives they've lost.

What I really love about this movie is the way both characters are extremely smart. Kimble knows he has to clear himself. He jumps right back into the investigation of who killed his wife, searching through hospital records, checking on the prosthetics department, and finally obtaining a list of people with artificial arms that fit his assailant's description. All the while, he has to avoid getting caught by Sam Gerard. Gerard knows how criminals think. He can't figure out why Kimble would run right back to Chicago, where people are looking for him. As doubts begin to form, he nonetheless continues to hunt for Kimble, but does not hesitate to follow up on evidence that shows the man may not be guilty. 

Events seem to built to a head very quickly, so the movie goes by really fast. We are given just enough information at just the right pace. Who killed Kimble's wife? The one-armed man whom Kimble finds. Why? Wait and see. Kimble finds out that liver samples for a new drug have been switched, by the pharmaceutical company that the one-armed man works for... He goes to his friend for help, and discovers that his friend is the one who was falsifying the results. And everyone who was involved who might know about the false test results has been killed. Except that Kimble was called to emergency surgery the night he was supposed to be murdered, and his wife was killed instead. 

There is so much action packed into chase and strategy scenes that it really was exhausting! Unfortunately, the big train wreck at the beginning doesn't transform well onto the small TV screen. The laundry room, on the other hand, was neatly claustrophobic. 

The lengths that Gerard goes to in order to catch his prey shows how obsessed he is with his job. Kimble is obsessed for a completely different reason. His life is at stake. 

A truly fun movie, with just the right mix of strategy and action, betrayal and friendship. This one is a keeper.
 
   

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