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Monthly Archives: October 1996

The Ghost and the Darkness (1996)

DIRECTOR: Stephen Hopkins

CAST: Michael Douglas, Val Kilmer, John Kani, Brian McCardie, Bernard Hill, Om Puri, Tom Wilkinson, Emily Mortimer

REVIEW:

The Ghost and the Darkness is obviously an attempt to do for the African tall grass what Jaws did for the water, with two lions in place of a great white shark, but it falls far short of Jaws’ classic status for a few reasons.  One, director Stephen Hopkins is no Steven Spielberg.  Two, Michael Douglas and Val Kilmer are not playing characters nearly as well-delineated as those played by Roy Scheider, Richard Dreyfuss, and Robert Shaw.  Prolific author and screenwriter William Goldman (who’s written titles as diverse as The Princess Bride, Marathon Man, All the President’s Men, and Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid) does not churn out one of his stronger works.  As an example of the general level of subtlety, the big game hunter is named Remington, and it’s the kind of movie where people say painfully earnest wannabe profundities like “you build bridges.  You have to go where the rivers are”. Continue reading

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