In The Line Of Fire 1993

Critics score:
95 / 100

Reviews provided by RottenTomatoes

Gene Siskel, Chicago Tribune: Director Wolfgang Petersen moves the story along, but his real job is to simply stay out of the way of his two racehorse lead actors. And he does. Read more

Clifford Terry, Chicago Tribune: Petersen directs his film in a straightforward, workmanlike fashion-few surprises here -- and, curiously, for most of the film is better at establishing a kind of amiability than a hard tension. Read more

Kenneth Turan, Los Angeles Times: Every part of this film trades so heavily on Eastwood's presence that it is impossible to imagine it with anyone else in the starring role. Read more

Jay Boyar, Orlando Sentinel: Despite the presence of all these action-flick cliches, In the Line of Fire works. Sure, it's no more than a formula movie, but it's an effective formula movie. Read more

Carrie Rickey, Philadelphia Inquirer: Between them, director Petersen and screenwriter Jeff Maguire do a memorable job developing their characters in this story of personal and professional redemption. Read more

John Hartl, Seattle Times: For the most part, this is an exciting, engaging thriller, well-directed by Wolfgang Petersen. Read more

Vincent Canby, New York Times: The most uproariously entertaining movie of the summer so far. Read more

Jonathan Rosenbaum, Chicago Reader: If you don't care about such motivations, this is a pretty good thriller, though not one you're likely to remember for very long. Read more

Owen Gleiberman, Entertainment Weekly: Though the movie is engrossing, it lacks something: fire, weirdness, originality. Read more

Terrence Rafferty, New Yorker: The movie has a clear, simple thriller logic that's far more satisfying than the static variations-on-a-massacre construction of Eastwood's Dirty Harry pictures and spaghetti Westerns. Read more

James Berardinelli, ReelViews: Hands down, Malkovich's assassin is the best thing about this solid thriller -- a villain that rivals Hannibal Lecter for intelligence and cold, calculated viciousness. Read more

Roger Ebert, Chicago Sun-Times: Despite the familiar plot elements ... In the Line of Fire is not a retread but a smart, tense, well-made thriller -- Eastwood's best in the genre since Tightrope. Read more

Peter Travers, Rolling Stone: In the Line of Fire is often an explosive blend of pounding tension and wisecracking humor. This is formula dished out by experts. Read more

Richard Corliss, TIME Magazine: Clint Eastwood has always been an old man. Even in the '60s, as the gunslinger in Sergio Leone westerns, Eastwood had the squinty eyes, sour mouth and weary walk of a soldier who had been in too many wars. Read more

Geoff Andrew, Time Out: Directing each set-piece for all he's worth, Petersen highlights the plot with vivid details and invests several of the action sequences with moral/psychological dimensions. Read more

Todd McCarthy, Variety: Director Wolfgang Petersen sends the story efficiently down its straight and narrow track, deftly engineering the battle of wills between two desperately committed men. Read more

Hal Hinson, Washington Post: Malkovich does such wonderfully unexpected things, especially with his line readings, that he leaves us dumbfounded. No other performer is more effortlessly unnerving than this perversely gifted actor. Read more

Desson Thomson, Washington Post: [It] is not a brilliant movie. But thanks to Eastwood, it feels like one. Read more