Variety - 03/24/2003
"...McTiernan is in his element here, drenching the action in relentless wind and rain..."
Sight and Sound - 08/01/2003
"...Action-movie director John McTiernan keeps things coherent and pacy..."
John Travolta and Samuel L. Jackson team up in BASIC, an action-packed military thriller from director John McTiernan (DIE HARD). Jackson plays Sergeant Nathan West, propagator of a harsh military training program that appears to have pushed a group of young recruits too far, when an exercise winds up with them attempting to kill each other. Only two soldiers emerge alive from the slaughter, and Jackson isn't among them. Rogue DEA agent Tom Hardy (Travolta) is called in to question the survivors, teaming up with Lieutenant Julia Osbourne (Connie Nielsen), in an attempt to solve the puzzle.
The two remaining soldiers (played by Giovanni Ribisi and Brian Van Holt) tell their conflicting tales, with director McTiernan utilizing flashbacks to illustrate what may have happened in the Panama jungle. It quickly transpires that Jackson and Travolta's characters are old army acquaintances, both with a penchant for unorthodox techniques; and when it transpires that corrupt doctor Bill Styles (Harry Connick Jr.) has been selling the recruits illegal drugs, it also appears he has a romantic history with Nielsen's character. The subsequent plot twists come thick and fast, resulting in a white-knuckle ride to the finale, in which nothing can be taken for granted.
Theatrical Release |