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Cast, Crew, and Other Info

Jonny Lee Miller as Crash Override

Angelina Jolie as Acid Burn

Fisher Stevens as Plague

Matthew Lillard as Cereal Killer

Lorraine Bracco as Margo

Written by Rafael Moreu

Directed by Iain Softley

Complete information is available from the
IMDB
.

This
DVD release

includes english and french as spoken languages, and
english, french,
and spanish subtitles.


Past movie reviews can be found here.

Premise

A group of hackers are framed for the creation of a
virus that will
capsize several tankers.

High Point

The contest.

Low Point

The operating system on the other end. I understand
the need to find
a representation of things that Joe Public viewer can
follow, but
leave it as a metaphor instead of putting it on the
actual computer
screens! You know there are people involved who know
what they’re
doing. (Just check out the screens when they study
the contents of
the incomplete file; that’s an actual hex editor,
which is perfect for
that scene.)

The Scores

We’ve seen the innocent parties framed in dozens of
films before this,
but in this case, the “innocent” parties are still
guilty of
(non-malicious) crimes anyway. It’s an interesting
spin on the word
“innocent.” There’s a pretty unique on-screen style,
too. I give the
originality 4 out of 6.

The effects were nicely done. Granted,
there wasn’t much to
them, and they weren’t meant to be a convincing part
of reality, but
they suited their purpose quite well. I give it 5
out of 6.

The story has some technical holes, but the
only real plot
hole is the fact that the characters walked away from
criminal
charges, in spite of breaking several dozen laws. I
don’t see that
prosecutor being that kind to them. I give it 4 out
of 6.

The acting from Stevens, Miller, Jolie, and
Lillard is very
convincing for those characters. Lorraine Bracco,
Renoly Santiago
(Phantom Phreak), and Jesse Bradford did some very
unconvincing work,
though. I give it 4 out of 6.

The emotional response is good in terms of
the story, but
it’s undermined by the groaning that most of the
computer science
produces. As I said above, there were definitely
people involved who
knew what was going on, but other moments were just
horrid. Scenes
like the traffic race and the contest were a lot of
fun in spite of
this. I give it 4 out of 6.

The production was uneven. Some scenes (the
opening
flashback, contest, TV duel, phone booths, and video
game in
particular) were very well crafted with a unique and
interesting
style, obviously the product of a lot of work and
planning. Other
scenes, like the board room scene (with a speaker
whose head is out of
frame, but who still manages to keep his beverage of
choice in the
centre of the screen) and the proper introduction of
Crash and Burn
(with a medium shot that crops out Cereal’s head as
he sets up an
important joke, followed by quick close ups and a
long shot on
Cereal’s meaningless rambling that should have been
the same angle as
his previous line) seemed to be slapped together with
little attention
or effort. In fact, the product placement in this is
so blatant that
it almost became the Low Point. The first 30 minutes
look like a
commercial! I give it 4 out of 6.

Overall, it’s an amusing time killer, but if
you’re touchy
about your computer science, you might want to avoid
it. I give it 4
out of 6.

In total, Hackers receives 29 out of 42.