Live Wire (1992)

Directed by Christian Duguay
Pierce Brosnan, Ron Silver, Ben Cross, Lisa Eichorn
Music by Craig Safan

Live Wire is another turkey from Pierce Brosnan, made during the gap between Remmington Steele and his resurgence in Goldeneye. Livewire features an incredibly contrived story with a few too many co-incidences, and plot holes large enough to…well you know the clichés. Apparently the film-makers didn’t.

The film opens with an ominous warning:
“Over the last decade more than 3,600 lives worldwide have been lost as a direct act of terrorism. Nearly every country on the globe has its share of political kidnappings, hijackings, and firebombing, with one notable exception…the United States of America
Due to a stable political system, and the difficulty of smuggling easily detectable incendiary devices into the country, the United States has been relatively safe…

…until now”

The plot concerns three U.S. Senators who pass a bill which supports a clandestine arms deal. They support the bill, they get rich, and pay a fee to Mikhail Rashid, played by Ben Cross (the only actor who attempts to inject some life into these tired proceedings).

But after the deal has gone through, the Senators renege on paying their fees to Rashid. Naturally enough, the aggrieved Rashid takes matters into his own hands by killing two of the Senators with a nifty liquid explosive, which is alarmingly similar to water. After the Senators drink the liquid, served to them as ice water in a restaurant and as a mixer in a cocktail, it mixes with their stomach acids and it becomes a lethal nitro-style concoction. Turning the consumer into a human bomb. This is all graphically displayed with bulging red eyes, streams of blood pouring from all orifices, and stomachs and chests splitting open.

Pierce Brosnan plays Danny O’Neil, the FBI’s leading explosives expert, who gets assigned to protect the third and remaining Senator (played by Ron Silver). Now here is where the coincidences start to stack up. O’Neil’s ex-wife (played by Lisa Eichorn) is partnering the Senator. In fact it was their affair that splintered the O’Neil marriage. Obviously O’Neil is not too happy about his new assignment. Needless to say, Rashid ends up kidnapping O’Neil’s ex-wife forcing him to not only rescue her but save the Senator in order to find out why he’s a target. It’s difficult to explain all the plot strands when everybody is so nepitiously linked.

The movie also features a rather misplaced sex scene in a bath tub.

The musical score by Craig Safan is soft-cock rock of the worst kind. And it’s not that that it has dated that makes it bad. It was never any good to begin with.

Apparently a sequel was made (not featuring Pierce Brosnan). I have not rushed out to see it.

This review is based on the New Line Entertainment USA DVD

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Live Wire (1992)

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