True Lies

Review by
Robert Wilfred Franson

Director: James Cameron
Writers: Claude Zidi, Simon Michael, Didier Kaminka

  • Arnold Schwarzenegger — Harry Tasker
  • Jamie Lee Curtis — Helen Tasker
  • Tom Arnold — Albert Gibson
  • Tia Carrere — Juno Skinner
  • Eliza Dushku — Dana Tasker
  • Grant Heslov — Faisil
  • Charlton Heston — Spencer Trilby
  • Art Malik — Salim Abu Aziz
  • Bill Paxton — Simon

Twentieth Century Fox: 1994

141 minutes February 2007

True Lies is a quite enjoyable action-thriller movie. It's the mixture that does it. A reasonable high-stakes national-security challenge, believable motivation, fast adventure, romantic tension, and a touch of comedy. The cast does a fine job of presenting characters with depth, while carrying all these elements without letting the pace flag.

The primary plot is the attempt by a terrorist group, Crimson Jihad, to import ex-Soviet nuclear warheads into American cities and detonate them. Arnold Schwarzenegger is the point man for a secret agency that must ferret out the terrorists and stop them.

A secondary plot is the romantic involvement of naive housewife Jamie Lee Curtis with a mysterious fellow with connections to American secret service, or to something else. The two lines of action clash and intertwine neatly, often surprisingly.

I want especially to commend the writing and acting of True Lies that fleshes out the villains, and the villainy, of the piece to provide a solid and believable foe.

True Lies is nicely done all around. A well-crafted contemporary adventure film.


© 2007 Robert Wilfred Franson


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