Fish-Flavored Baseball Bat

It's a John Cleese reference.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

VHS Vednesday: Icebreaker

ICEBREAKER (2000). Directed by David Giancola. Starring Sean Astin, Bruce Campbell, and Stacy Keach.

Well, considering the time of the season, how about a nice snowbound action movie? Icebreaker makes no effort to hide the fact that it's a Die Hard rip-off, and as such, it's indistinguishable from any number of Die Hard clones (none of them a match for the original). This time, it's set in a ski resort, where we meet our ski-patrol hero Matt (Sean Astin). As the movie begins, Matt's biggest problem is trying to win the approval of his fiancee's stern father (Stacy Keach), but soon finds his personal issues overshadowed by the arrival of a ruthless terrorist (a shaven-headed Bruce Campbell), who has taken over the resort to retrieve a crash-landed shipment of stolen plutonium. To make matters even more desperate, our villain is not only evil, but also terminally ill, so he has nothing to lose. The movie proceeds through its predictable paces, delivering nothing more nor less than what is expected.
Who's Leaving This Off Their Resume?
As much as I like Sean Astin, he's at his best in supporting roles...he appears totally lost as an action star. Indeed, Matt is one of the more ineffective heroes of this genre...on more than one occasion, he has to be saved by the unexpected intervention of another character. Stacy Keach does what he can with his thinly-written grumpy dad character, but there's not much that CAN be done with it. Unsurprisingly, the movie is stolen by Bruce Campbell, though his performance here is a bit different from his usual fare. Campbell eschews his trademark tongue-in-cheek attitude, playing the character more-or-less straight (though he does have some glib moments, his humor here is more sly than broad). He's no Alan Rickman...but he IS Bruce Campbell.



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