Posts Tagged ‘Kathleen Quinlan’

A slight excess of goofiness taints the majestic science-fiction horror atmosphere established in ‘Event Horizon’

January 25, 2016

By Matthew E. Milliken
Jan. 25, 2016

Event Horizon is my favorite bad movie of all time. I love this 1997 feature because it comes oh so close to bona fide greatness.

The story is set in the year 2047, 32 years after humanity has established its first permanent base on the moon and a quarter-century after commercial mining has begun on Mars. After a brief prologue in which an obviously lonely scientist, William “Billy” Weir, wakes from a nightmare and tells a photograph of what turns out to be his dead wife that he misses her dearly, the action shifts to the U.S. Aerospace Command vessel Lewis and Clark minutes before it fires its main engines for a 72-day journey to the remote reaches of the solar system.

Only after the ship arrives and its crew emerges from stasis chambers — and after Weir, who’s tagging along for the ride, suffers another nightmare — do Capt. Miller (Laurence Fishburne) and his comrades learn why they have been yanked from a well-deserved shore leave and dispatched to the rarely visited fringes of known space. It turns out that a ship thought destroyed in 2040 has been found in a decaying orbit around the planet Neptune, where it is broadcasting a short but cryptic radio signal.

The Event Horizon was said to be a research vessel that was lost after its reactor went critical. But Weir (Sam Neill) informs his captive (and highly skeptical) audience that this information was fictitious — a cover story. In actuality, the ship disappeared without a trace after activating its gravity drive, a novel device built by Weir that may permit interstellar travel by folding the space-time continuum.

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Spy vs. spy: An aging veteran tangos with a canny but green rookie in understated character study ‘Breach’

February 5, 2014

By Matthew E. Milliken
Feb. 5, 2014

In late 2000, veteran FBI agent Robert Hanssen was posted to the bureau’s headquarters and put in charge of a new division, the Information Assurance Section. Hanssen, a devout Catholic, had an abrasive, brook-no-B.S. approach to his job that had won him many enemies. He also had an impressive intellect that had earned him a great deal of respect, however begrudging, from his peers.

Over a two-month period, probationary agent Eric O’Neill would come to know Hanssen intimately. As shown in the 2007 film Breach, which is based on actual events, O’Neill was pulled from surveillance duty and made Hanssen’s assistant. His secret assignment: Win the trust of his crusty, acerbic boss — and figure out how to catch Hanssen in the act of betraying his employer and nation.

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