HOME |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
Newest Reviews
Call to Spy, A
Tailgate
Other Lamb, The
Every Time I Die
Lynn + Lucy
Topsy-Turvy
Honest Thief
Blood and Money
Rose: A Love Story
Antrum: The Deadliest Film Ever Made
Om Dar-B-Dar
Silencing, The
J.R. 'Bob' Dobbs and the Church of SubGenius
Dick Johnson is Dead
Two/One
Cognition
Legacy of Lies
I Am Woman
Alien Addiction
Dare, The
South Terminal
Little Monsters
Yield to the Night
My Zoe
Young Playthings
End of Summer
Times of Harvey Milk, The
Buddies
Threshold
Perfectly Normal Family, A
Ravage
Honeymoon Phase, The
One Summer
Bird Island
Variety
Devil to Pay, The
Gypsy
Lost in London
Divorce Italian Style
Becky
   
 
Newest Articles
Confessions of a Porn Star: Adult Material on DVD
They're Still Not Sure It is a Baby: Eraserhead on Blu-ray
Werewolves are Real: Dog Soldiers on Digital
Rose: A Love Story - Producers April Kelley and Sara Huxley Interview
Phone Phreak: 976-EVIL on Blu-ray
Living the Nightmare: Dementia on Blu-ray
Becky and The Devil to Pay: Ruckus and Lane Skye Interview
Big Top Bloodbath: Circus of Horrors on Blu-ray
A Knock on the Door at 4 O'clock in the Morning: The Strangers on Blu-ray
Wives of the Skies: Honey Lauren Interview
To Catch a Thief: After the Fox on Blu-ray
Tackling the Football Film: The Arsenal Stadium Mystery on Blu-ray
Film Noir's Golden Couple: This Gun for Hire on Blu-ray
The Doctor Who Connection: Invasion on Blu-ray
Hill's Angles: Benny Hill and Who Done It? on Blu-ray
Big Willie Style: Keep It Up Downstairs on Blu-ray
Walt's Vault: 5 Cult Movies on Disney+
Paradise Lost: Walkabout on Blu-ray
Buster Makes Us Feel Good: Buster Keaton - 3 Films (Volume 3) on Blu-ray
Network On Air: Nights In with ABC 3 - Don't Go Away - I Could Do with a Bit of Cheer Now!
What Use is Grief to a Horse? Equus on Blu-ray
For God's Sake Strap Yourselves Down: Flash Gordon on 4K UHD Collector's Edition
Party Hard: Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure on Blu-ray
Network On Air: Nights In with ABC 2 - Your Faces are All Blurred!
Eve Knew Her Apples: The Lady Eve on Blu-ray
   
 
  Saint, The Bring Back Roger
Year: 1997
Director: Phillip Noyce
Stars: Val Kilmer, Elisabeth Shue, Rade Serbedzija, Valeriy Nikolaev, Henry Goodman, Alun Armstrong, Michael Byrne, Evgeniy Lazarev, Irina Apeksimova, Lev Prygunov, Charlotte Cornwell, Emily Mortimer, Tommy Flanagan, Julian Rhind-Tutt, Roger Moore
Genre: Thriller, Romance, AdventureBuy from Amazon
Rating:  4 (from 1 vote)
Review: When Simon Templar (Val Kilmer) was a little boy, he was brought up in a Catholic orphanage, but he was a rebel who refused to buckle under the strict rules the priests and nuns arranged for the children. One thing that was drummed into him were the names of the saints, and he never forgot those nor their stories; another thing he never forgot was that one night after he and his fellow orphans were punished, he almost escaped, and wanted to steal a kiss from his favourite girl before he went, but the priests caused an accident and she fell to her death. This has haunted him into adulthood, where he is now a millionaire thanks to his way with taking on jobs as one of the best thieves for hire in the business...

The Saint was of course the Leslie Charteris character who was created by the author in the nineteen-twenties and became the hero of countless books and television episodes, as well as a number of big screen adaptations from the thirties to the fifties. George Sanders was the highest profile actor to take the role there, but it was Roger Moore who would be most associated with the adventurer thanks to umpteen television instalments in the sixties, which rarely left the studio but did make great use of back projected exotic locations to place him all over the globe. Moore had been trying to get a big screen comeback for the character off the ground since the eighties, once the Ian Ogilvy version of the seventies had run its course.

He failed, but The Saint did return in the form of Kilmer, and promptly failed to set the box office alight with well-founded rumours of much behind the scenes meddling with director (and long time fan of Charteris) Phillip Noyce's vision. Essentially, this had taken a far more romantic view of the story, so Templar fell in love, but then he would see that potential happiness torn from his grasp to make him the man he was, a more resonant echo of the prologue. However, once the movie was completed to Noyce's satisfaction, the producers didn't like what the test audiences were telling them, and the entire last act was reshot, which effectively was a waste of millions because the film flopped at the box office anyway.

What was the problem in this era when classic characters were getting reimagined hither and yon, and the public were apparently welcoming this trend? One issue was that while the sixties series was set around the world if not filmed there, this actually did visit Moscow to shoot scenes there at a time when doing so in Red Square and so on was notable news. What it was not was particularly captivating to watch, lending a dour appearance to what was patently emulating the James Bond series, as if they would have been better making a John Le Carré adaptation than an action adventure with a dash of romance. The snow fell, the Russians chuntered, and Templar got stuck in a sewer: not as compelling as what the Bond franchise was carrying off at the same time, not by some margin.

But the biggest liability was Kilmer himself, in one of the most narcissistic performances of his career; he had ditched Batman & Robin to star in this, not such a bad move, but watching him now it appeared as if Ben Stiller had learned a lot from Kilmer here in creating Zoolander as pouting Val demonstrated his Blue Steel at every opportunity, to the point of distraction. You couldn't imagine this Templar would ever be a master of disguise since every one of his looks closely resembled a certain Mr V. Kilmer, and his array of silly accents was not doing him any favours either. The purists who loved the books complained of a missed opportunity, for this was more a hero who happened to be called The Saint than faithful to the source (this incarnation was strictly a non-killer), and the addition of that nineties cause celebre, cold fusion, was a poor fit, notably when we had to believe wide-eyed scientist Elisabeth Shue had cracked it all by herself and not a mention of red mercury to be heard. Another thriller that missed the Cold War but was at a loss what to do about it, you could see why it didn't catch on at the time. Music by Graeme Revell (Orbital offered their version of the famous theme).
Reviewer: Graeme Clark

 

This review has been viewed 1739 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

 
Review Comments (0)


Untitled 1

Login
  Username:
 
  Password:
 
   
 
Forgotten your details? Enter email address in Username box and click Reminder. Your details will be emailed to you.
   

Latest Poll
Which star is the best at shouting?
Arnold Schwarzenegger
Brian Blessed
Tiffany Haddish
Steve Carell
Olivia Colman
Captain Caveman
Sylvester Stallone
Gerard Butler
Samuel L. Jackson
Bipasha Basu
   
 
   

Recent Visitors
Graeme Clark
Paul Smith
Darren Jones
Andrew Pragasam
  Lee Fiveash
  Mick Stewart
Enoch Sneed
  Dsfgsdfg Dsgdsgsdg
   

 

Last Updated: