Con Air (1997)

Genres - Action  |   Sub-Genres - Action Thriller  |   Release Date - Jun 6, 1997 (USA)  |   Run Time - 115 min.  |   Countries - United States   |   MPAA Rating - R
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Review by Mike DiBella

Sometimes it takes a couple of years for a film to fully mature -- not so with the ill-advised Con Air. In this mostly depraved, pseudo-stylized action film, a perenially distinguished cast goes for the big bucks. Director Simon West, doing his best John Woo impression, recruits the talented John Cusack, Nicholas Cage and John Malkovich for this misguided effort. Malkovich and Cage make the most out of the dissatisfying dialogue while Cusack is completely out of his element. The plot twists keep the film from being a total disaster -- although the romance at the center of the film is a stretch, considering the nonstop-bloodbath action sequences -- as does the late appearance of always-entertaining eccentric Steve Buscemi. In fact, the spirited supporting cast of characters, including Dave Chappelle and Ving Rhames, almost steal the show entirely. Filmgoers didn't heed reviewers' advice, however, as the film climbed well over $100 million at the box office.