Stars: Dolph Lundgren, Dina Meyer
Genre: Action, Crime, Sci-Fi
Rating: R (Restricted)
Runtime: 96 minutes
You might be tempted to call it "Johnny Moronic" after you've seen this illogical and derivative adaptation of William Gibson's cyberpunk short story (available in his book Burning Chrome), which is all the more depressing since Gibson himself wrote the screenplay. First you have to ask yourself why valuable top-secret electronic data would be stored in the "wet-wired" brain of a human courier (played by Keanu Reeves), who then transports the data from China to New Jersey as part of his last, most dangerous assignment. Surely there are better ways to transmit sensitive information, but since this is really just a conventional thriller with near-future design and spiffy special effects, Gibson and New York artist Robert Longo (making his directorial debut) are more interested in surface gloss and cyberpunk atmosphere. On that level the movie's fairly engaging, and Japanese film star Takeshi Kitano makes a pretty good villain, tracking Reeves down for the information in his data-packed brain. The movie also boasts an eclectic gallery of supporting players including rapper Ice-T, performance artist and rocker Henry Rollins, beefcake actor Dolph Lundgren, and transcontinental oddball Udo Kier. They can't stop this trip through virtual reality from being botched up, but sci-fi fans will certainly enjoy the echo of Gibson's fiction that remains on the screen. --Jeff Shannon
What the fuck is going on? WHAT THE FUCK IS GOING ON? You know, all my life, I've been careful to stay in my own corner. Looking out for Number One... no complications. Now, suddenly, I'm responsible for the *entire fucking world*, and everybody and his mother is trying to kill me, IF... IF... my head doesn't blow up first.
Maybe it's not just about you any more.
Listen. You listen to me. You see that city over there? THAT'S where I'm supposed to be. Not down here with the dogs, and the garbage, and the fucking last month's newspapers blowing *back* and *forth*. I've had it with them, I've had it with you, I've had it with ALL THIS - *I want ROOM SERVICE*! I want the club sandwich, I want the cold Mexican beer, I want a $10,000-a-night hooker! I want my shirts laundered... like they do... at the Imperial Hotel... in Tokyo.