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Review by Andrew Manning (5/99)

Release: 1999, 20th Century Fox
Starring: Sean Connery, Catherine Zeta-Jones, Ving Rhames, Will Patton
Director: Jon Amiel
MPAA Rating: [PG-13] sexuality, violence, language
Genre: Action/Suspense

The trap is set...

Sean Connery and Catherine Zeta-Jones

A young woman working for an insurance company (Zeta-Jones) and a master thief (Connery) team up to pull off a computer heist worth $8 billion.


Most of the good points of Entrapment are minor and/or technical. For example, the main heist the thieves are trying to pull off is scheduled to occur on New Year's Eve before the year 2000. So throughout the film, the text "x days to Millennium" pops up, and it works to create a sense of anticipation until the finale arrives.

A lot of gadgets are cool in a James Bond sort of way, and the acts in which Zeta-Jones and Connery are eluding security systems are fun to watch. But perhaps the main saving grace of Entrapment is the charisma of its stars: Connery is still slick and cool after all these years, and Zeta-Jones, previously seen in The Mask of Zorro is simply gorgeous. Ving Rhames is also good in a supporting role. And then, of course, there's that scene where Catherine Zeta-Jones' butt (the true star of the movie) is doing the limbo by slinking under the red yarn: completely unfair manipulation!


The problem with these movies about crime and double crossing is that they've been done so many times before, that no double cross they can come up with is sufficiently surprising and shocking anymore. In fact, all of the "surprise endings" are totally expected by audiences nowadays, so there's really nothing exciting about Entrapment at all. And the more layers of treachery they try to create, the more they just muddle up the story and confuse viewers. It's like Wild Things without the benefit of the Neve Campbell/Denise Richards liplocking. There's a lot of backstabbing going on in this movie, but instead of gasping in astonishment, you sort of just sit there and go, "Oh."

Needless to say, this all gets pretty boring at two hours. If that aforementioned charisma wasn't working throughout the flick, a lot of people would just get up and walk out after the first hour.

This film was even more annoying than Tomorrow Never Dies in its blatant product placement. From pizza to cars, the stars kept flashing products throughout. Connery and Zeta-Jones even spend a few lines talking about the car they trashed, then Connery and Rhames bring it up again later on. But perhaps worst of all, the duo flash an American Express card several times in one scene in such plain view that I expected Connery to look directly at the audience, have the shot freeze, and the text "Member Since '74" pop up on the screen. I normally don't even notice these things, so that must be a testament to how unengaging the movie was.

Rating: 4 out of 10 (0=Abysmal, 5=Average, 10=Excellent)

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