The Art of War

"Terrible"

The Art of War Review


Wesley Snipes is a master of selecting bad action roles. Murder at 1600, U.S. Marshals, Money Train, Drop Zone, Boiling Point, and the ultimate camp film - Passenger 57. The Art of War is another entry in this very ugly and unique category. Ultimately, it is little more than a ridiculous action film with a plot as believable as the Warren Report, ugly violence that would have made Peckinpah cringe, and terrible acting by B-list actors like Michael Biehn and Anne Archer. Oddly, it feels like the undiscovered sequel to another Snipes "masterpiece," Rising Sun.

The movie revolves around the convenient story of a special UN operative caught up in a secret murder conspiracy involving a Chinese ambassador, the Chinese Triad Brotherhood, a rich Chinese businessman (played by...that bad guy from Rising Sun, Cary-Hiroyuki Tagawa) a Chinese UN interpreter, and, inexplicably, Donald Sutherland. The film ends with more confusion than a boatload of Chinese immigrants trying to register at Ellis Island. Or should I say the film ends with the most blatant ripoff of both The Matrix and all of John Woo's Hong Kong films combined.

I am really at a loss to figure out why Wesley Snipes had the gumption to not only star in this action dud but also act as one of the producers of the film. I usually enjoy Snipes' movies - though his dramatic roles better show off his creativity as an actor than the flashiness of his action films. Simply, I am amazed by the how inane the script was, filled with terrible cliches and extremely violent action sequences. Director Christian Duguay (Screamers) has a strange attraction to the viciousness of violent acts -- showing splattering brains, people impaled with broken shards of glass, and lots of gargling and gagging as blood sprays everywhere. It also sickens me to know that Oliver Stone, one of the greatest directors working today, had his hand in producing this monstrosity. I guess Snipes sold Stone on the conspiracy angle and Stone chose not to read the script, watch the dailies, be involved in casting, or anything else -- or else he'd be filing a court order to remove his name from the credits.

It's also seems evident that with the Russkies as our new bosom buddies and the Middle Eastern terrorist angle being beaten to death in the last couple of years that the new international enemies in Hollywood are the Communist Chinese. I'm sure over the next couple of months, even more "Chinese conspiracy/martial-arts action flicks" are going to be popping up in your local multiplex.

Hopefully they won't include Wesley Snipes.

Wesley goes to War.



The Art of War

Facts and Figures

Run time: 117 mins

In Theaters: Friday 25th August 2000

Box Office USA: $29.5M

Box Office Worldwide: $30.2M

Budget: $40M

Distributed by: Warner Bros. Pictures

Production compaines: Morgan Creek Productions, Franchise Pictures, Amen Ra Films

Reviews

Contactmusic.com: 1 / 5

Rotten Tomatoes: 16%
Fresh: 13 Rotten: 67

IMDB: 5.7 / 10

Cast & Crew

Director: Christian Duguay

Starring: as Neil Shaw, as Douglas Thomas, as Frank Capella, as Eleanor Hooks

Contactmusic


Links



Advertisement

Contactmusic 2017 Exclusive

New Movies

Life Movie Review

Life Movie Review

Like a mash-up of Alien and Gravity, this ripping sci-fi horror movie is very effective...

The Lost City of Z Movie Review

The Lost City of Z Movie Review

Based on a true story, it's the historical aspect of these events that holds the...

Chips Movie Review

Chips Movie Review

It's clear from the very start that this movie has little to do with the...

Beauty And The Beast Movie Review

Beauty And The Beast Movie Review

This remake of Disney's 1991 classic is remarkably faithful, using present-day digital animation effects to...

The Salesman Movie Review

The Salesman Movie Review

Iranian filmmaker Asghar Farhadi won his second Oscar with this astute drama which, like 2011's...

Get Out Movie Review

Get Out Movie Review

Leave it to a comedian to make one of the scariest movies in recent memory....

Personal Shopper Movie Review

Personal Shopper Movie Review

After winning a series of major awards for her role in Olivier Assayas' Clouds of...

Advertisement
Certain Women Movie Review

Certain Women Movie Review

In films like Wendy and Lucy and Meek's Cutoff, writer-director Kelly Reichardt has told sharply...

Kong: Skull Island Movie Review

Kong: Skull Island Movie Review

After the success of 2014's Godzilla reboot, the Warner Bros monsters get their own franchise,...

Viceroy's House Movie Review

Viceroy's House Movie Review

Filmmaker Gurinder Chada (Bend It Like Beckham) draws on her own family history to explore...

Trespass Against Us Movie Review

Trespass Against Us Movie Review

With an extra dose of attitude and energy, this Irish comedy-drama hits us like a...

Logan Movie Review

Logan Movie Review

Hugh Jackman returns to his signature role one last time (so he says), reuniting with...

Patriots Day Movie Review

Patriots Day Movie Review

The third time's a charm for Mark Wahlberg and director Peter Berg, who previously teamed...

A Cure for Wellness Movie Review

A Cure for Wellness Movie Review

It's no surprise that this creep-out horror thriller is packed with whizzy visual invention, since...

Advertisement
Artists
Actors
    Filmmakers
      Artists
      Bands
        Musicians
          Artists
          Celebrities
             
              Artists
              Interviews
                musicians & bands in the news
                  actors & filmmakers in the news
                    celebrities in the news

                      Go Back in Time using our News archive to see what happened on a particular day in the past.