The President of the United States is in Salamanca, Spain, about to address the city in a public square. We see a plain-clothes cop, his girlfriend with another man, a mother and child, an American tourist with a video camera, and a Secret Service agent newly returned from medical leave. Shots ring out and the President falls; a few minutes later, we hear a distant explosion, then a bomb goes off in the square. Those minutes are retold, several times, emphasizing different characters' actions. Gradually, we discover who's behind the plot. Is the Secret Service one step ahead, or have the President's adversaries thought of everything? Written by
TV Executive Rex Brooks was originally written as a male. Director Pete Travis changed it to a woman because he felt the movie lacked a strong female character. See more »
When Howard films the scene around him, before the president is shot, a shot from behind reveals that the camcorder is switched off. See more »
Good morning, America. It's now 12 noon in Salamanca, Spain. In a short time, world leaders from over 150 countries meet here in Plaza Mayor to sign up to President Ashton's bold new counterterrorist strategy. Since 9/11, more than 4500 people have been killed in the rising tide of global terror. Those lives will not soon be forgotten as today, the world comes together to take a stand against this violence. We may be on the brink of a historic agreement between Western and Arab ...
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What can I say? This film is a gimmick film that relates the same event through the eyes of eight different characters that each hold a piece of the puzzle. The film stops and rewinds back to 20 minutes before the event for each character. It gets a little annoying because each time it stops, the audience is left on a cliffhanger which carries the film's tension into the next character.
As for what the film promises, it promises a good puzzle, suspense and intense action. It delivers on all accounts. This plot has twists and turns and is completely logical. Half way through this movie, if you think you got it all figured out, you haven't got a clue.
The action is fairly balanced through out the film and keeps the film moving. The car chase in this film is one of the better ones I have seen in a long long time. It had some shots in it that I think were a small homage of the original The Italian Job (1969) car chase scene.
Even though I personally thought that some of the characters were paper thin, many of the actors gave strong performances that made the characters believable. Forest Whitaker was the best. I had a little problem with Dennis Quaid's character, Secret Service Agent Thomas Barnes, starting out as the thinnest of all the characters but he grows in the film. Of course, Edgar Ramirez, Saïd Taghmaoui, and Eduardo Noriega were right on and make the film (but not as much as Whitaker).
The premise of this film makes a refreshing change from the ordinary style of mainstream movies.
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