why Cranky is in pain
Reviews since 1993:   A-E     F-N      O-Z    Posters       Who We Are and Why We Do What We Do     Contact    Search the Site

Your Donations support the Site

amazon.gif
Top Selling DVD     Books

BLU-RAY DVDs:
50 Shades of Grey
Exodus Gods and Kings
Grand Budapest Hotel
Imitation Game, The
Into the Woods

Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit
Robocop
Selma
Theory of Everything
Ride Along
We're the Millers
The Great Gatsby
Akira
Avatar
The Avengers
Amazing Spider-Man
Girl w/ Dragon Tattoo
Dark Knight Trilogy
World War Z
Happy Feet 2
Iton Man 3 combo
Batman Begins
Dark Knight
Fifth Element
The Hangover
Hunger Games
James Bond 11 disc coll.
Lord of the Rings trilogy
Mission Impossible GP
Sherlock Holmes AGOS
Singing in the Rain
Snow White Huntsman
Star Trek Into Darkness combo
Star Wars Saga
21 Jump Street
Ultimate Matrix coll
X-Men First Class
X-Men Trilogy
X-Men Wolverine

 BLU-Ray for Family DVDs 
Alice in Wonderland (2010)
Bambi
A Bug's Life
Cars
Chronicles of Narnia set
Coraline
Ghostbusters
Harry Potter 1-8 collection
Iron Man 2 combo
Kung Fu Panda
Lord of the Rings Trilogy Pinocchio
Pirates of Caribbean trilogy
Pixar short films
Ratatouille
Rio
Shrek the Whole Story
Sleeping Beauty
The Smurfs
combo
Snow White & 7 Dwarfs
Star Trek motion pictures set
Star Trek TNG Season One
Star Wars Saga (1-6)
Toy Story combo
Toy Story 2 combo
Toy Story 3 combo
Wall-E SE

OFCS

Search engine by FreeFind
Click to add search to YOUR web site!
click to search site

 DISNEY PIXAR DVDs
Alice in Wonderland
Bambi
Beauty and the Beast
Bolt
Cinderella
Coraline
E.T.
Kung Fu Panda
The Lion King
Mary Poppins 45th LE
Pinocchio
Princess Mononoke
Ratatouille
Rio 
Shrek the Whole Story
Simpsons Movie
Spider-Man Trilogy
Spirited Away
Star Trek movies set
Star Trek TOS (TV)
ST:TNG complete tv set
Star Wars Trilogy (1-3)
Star Wars Trilogy (4-6)
Toy Story DVD combo
Toy Story 2 DVD combo
Toy Story 3 DVD combo
Wallace and Gromit
Wall-E SE

Buy Movie collectibles
TV/Movie Collectibles

movie review query engine

NY film critics online

Privacy Policy

Shadow Conspiracy
Starring Charlie Sheen, Linda Hamilton, and Donald Sutherland
Directed by George P. Cosmatos

Served up for dissection this time around is Shadow Conspiracy, a thriller so tightly written that, should you make the mistake of leaving your seat for a quick trip to the little person's room, you will return refreshed and totally confused as to what happened while you were gone.

Shadow Conspiracy takes the well worn theme of Innocent Man Caught in Circumstances Beyond His Control and repeats it to the point of ridiculousness. It presents the notion of a secret government waiting in the wings, whose tech is so high, whose reach is so deep, and whose killers are so silent and well connected that, well, if this movie were set in Los Angeles you would probably believe that O.J. Simpson was framed.

It is a perfect example of how a thin but plausible story idea can be overwritten to death.

Charlie Sheen stars as Bobby Bishop, Special Assistant to the President. Bishop is, apparently, the only man who can convince the President not to make a certain speech, the result of which could be the utter destruction of the Stock Market and our way of life as we know it. He then has to put the kibosh on a story by reporter Amanda Givens (Linda Hamilton) that would spill the beans. So far so good.

Bishop has a friend, Dr. Yuri Pochenko (Theodore Bikel), who heads a think tank which uses a super-powerful computer program to track the misdeeds of our government. Must be a damned good program, as a silent killer blows away his tank-mates and sends him running, panicked, to find Bishop -- which he does just in time to utter the words "traitor" and "shadow." Pochenko gets popped. Bishop is holding the body. Murder suspect, take one.

So far so good. Bishop calls his boss, Chief of Staff Jacob Conrad (Donald Sutherland) and is given a place to meet oodles of law enforcement officials who will convey him safely back to the White House. Bishop shows, the Man-With-No-Tongue starts blasting away (having gotten to the rendezvous first), and the filmmakers start pointing big red arrows at who in the government is the bad guy. Too darn obvious, but still okay.

Reporter Givens re-appears to help uncover the conspiracy, and before you know it, there's another murder and the pair are on the run. Wherever they go, the body count rises. The cops can't find them. The FBI can't find them. What's left? You guessed it -- Super Secret Spy Technology!

Nicholas Turturro gives the term "comic relief" new meaning, appearing as a SuperSpyTech named Grasso who really gets off on his work. Grasso has written a computer program so powerful that it can simultaneously eavesdrop on fifteen thousand people. It is so powerful it could probably tell you who you had lunch with a year ago last Tuesday, and where the waiter who served you lived. And the social security number of the waiter's theatrical agent's ex-wife.

Shadow Conspiracy just doesn't know when to leave good enough alone. I haven't even mentioned the use of spy satellites. Or the assassination plot. Or the accidental loss of incriminating evidence. Or the fact that the audience was in stitches because the whole thing was so ridiculous. Shoot the writers, folks. Good thrillers know when to say "enough." Bad thrillers don't. As far as Shadow Conspiracy goes, enough is never enough.

On average, a first run movie ticket will run you Eight Bucks. Were Cranky able to set his own price to Shadow Conspiracy, he would have paid . . .

$1.00

That's for the inadvertent yucks. Shadow Conspiracy is flat out terrible.

Click to buy films starring Charlie Sheen
Click to buy films starring Linda Hamilton
Click to buy films starring Donald Sutherland

The Cranky Critic® is a Registered Trademark of, and his website is Copyright © 1995  -  2016   by Chuck Schwartz. Articles by Paul Fischer are Copyright © 1999 - 2006 Paul Fischer. All images, unless otherwise noted, are property of,©, ®, their respective studios and are used by permission. All Rights Reserved. Not to be used or copied for any commercial purpose. Academy Award(s) and Oscar®(s) are registered trademarks and service marks of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.