Wednesday, November 18, 2009

The Silencer (1999) * * *

Cast: Michael Dudikoff, Brennon Elliot, Terence Kelly, Gabrielle Miller

Directed By Robert Lee

In what is The Dudikoff’s best effort in ages (Even topping his stellar work in Last year’s The Shooter) The Silencer is a compact and somewhat intriguing conspiracy thriller that has the required action but ultimately builds a film noir atmosphere and provides unexpected shading to characters that could just as easily be cut and dry. It also features Dudikoff’s most impressive work as a thespian which comes to a surprise to those who have seen Dudikoff collect paychecks in dreary military action yarn duds like Crash Drive and Counter Measures. The Silencer then, is hands down one of the very best direct to video movies ever made. The story which revolves around a cold blooded assassin (Dudikoff, once again in his best performance to date) who teaches his trade to an undercover FBI agent (Elliot) who’s employer is cahoots with Dudikoff’s boss and ergo Dudikoff knows all the movies Elliot attempts, despite Dudikoff wanting to walk away right away when he finds out about Elliot’s connection. The conspiracy revolves around higher ups in the government looking to kill a politician looking to thwart their programs but things don’t go to plan as you would expect them to, as this plot thread is actually used set up Elliot as the gunner, in which Elliot now must team up with Dudikoff to prove his innocence. Though the film sounds like the same old thing, The Silencer actually deviates from the predictable path and goes out of its way to have fun with its conspiracies and showcase the characters of all involved as opposed to having everyone in the movie cut and dry. The action is especially suspenseful as characters actually do the credible thing, look for their advantage and mean serious business with their actions. The Silencer then does sometimes get perhaps too pretentious at times, but director Robert Lee conducts some compact action sequences, keep the story moving at a brisk clip and actually makes you get involved with the characters, In other words The Silencer then is a diamond in the rough and well worth seeing for the genre fan.

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