Destined to linger as a footnote if model Cindy Crawford -- who makes her bigscreen debut -- actually manages to go on to bigger and better things, "Fair Game" is otherwise notable only for its jaw-dropping stupidity, the sort of action yarn that hopes nonstop mayhem will help cloud just how nonsensical it is.

Destined to linger as a footnote if model Cindy Crawford — who makes her bigscreen debut — actually manages to go on to bigger and better things, “Fair Game” is otherwise notable only for its jaw-dropping stupidity, the sort of action yarn that hopes nonstop mayhem will help cloud just how nonsensical it is. Unless “House of Style” fans have been dying to watch Crawford dodge bullets , this Warner Bros. release should be playing in vidstores faster than she can walk down a runway.

To be fair, “Game” is an on-the-job training exercise for virtually everyone involved, and it shows, down to the often laughable dialogue and mostly uninspired action sequences. More attention seems to have been paid to stripping down Crawford and co-star William Baldwin than anything else, with Crawford’s garb generally reminiscent of Jacqueline Bisset’s wardrobe in “The Deep.”

Rarely has so much death and destruction hung on such an absurd plot, with Crawford playing Kate McQuean, a family-law attorney who inexplicably becomes the target of a heavily armed, high-tech KGB assault group.

There to defend her, apparently in no small part because of how good she looks in shorts when they first meet, is Miami cop Max Kirkpatrick (Baldwin), much to the detriment of his co-workers, relatives, etc., who are gradually killed off as the central duo keeps escaping in what amounts to a mindless Roadrunner cartoon.

The bad guys possess remarkable computer know-how and thus can track the pair in a variety of ingenious ways, however inept they may be at finishing the job once they catch up with them. Kate somehow ran afoul of a former KGB operative (Steven Berkoff) with access to all this hardware in carryingout her family-law practice, and the explanation turns out to be as ridiculous as much of the dialogue, which includes such lines as, “It’s like the toilet: It’s not over till the paper work is done.”

There is one impressive highway-chase sequence more than an hour in and one or two funny moments, but for the most part the pic careens along with little rhyme or reason.

Both director Andrew Sipes and writer Charlie Fletcher (working from a novel by Paula Gosling) make their bigscreen debuts here, but for producer Joel Silver this is merely the latest in a line of overblown actioners.

The one wrinkle here is the relatively scaled-down cast. Baldwin looks the part of a leading man in a “Die Hard”-esque turn, while Crawford can’t fairly be judged in this outing, since some of the lines she earnestly delivers might garner unintentional laughs (and they do) even if Meryl Streep were on the other end of them. Other than that, she’s merely a damsel in distress who takes a lot of showers.

Berkoff is a by-the-numbers villain, with Jenette Goldstein (“Aliens”) striking a blow for femme mercenaries as his chief henchwoman.

Tech credits include lots of big explosions, though none that achieve the thrill that comes when “Game” is finally over.

Fair Game

Production

A Warner Bros. release of a Silver Pictures production. Produced by Joel Silver. Executive producer, Thomas M. Hammel. Directed by Andrew Sipes. Screenplay, Charles Fletcher, based on the novel by Paula Gosling.

Crew

Camera (Technicolor), Richard Bowen; editors, David Finfer, Christian Wagner, Steven Kemper; music, Mark Mancina; production design, James Spencer; art direction, William F. Matthews; set decoration, Don K. Ivey; costume design, Louise Frogley; sound (Dolby), Peter Devlin, Dick Church; associate producer, Alan Schechter; assistant directors, David Sosna, Denis L. Stewart; secondunit director, stunt coordinator, Charles Picerni; casting, Jackie Burch. Reviewed at the Hollywood Galaxy Theatre, L.A., Nov. 1, 1995. MPAA Rating: R. Running time: 90 MIN.

With

Max - William Baldwin
Kate - Cindy Crawford
Kazak - Steven Berkoff
Meyerson - Christopher McDonald
Juantorena - Miguel Sandoval
Jodi - Johann Carlo
Rita - Salma Hayek
Louis - John Bedford Lloyd
Zhukov - Olek Krupa
Rosa - Jenette Goldstein
Want Entertainment News First? Sign up for Variety Alerts and Newsletters!
Post A Comment 0