Mike Nelson of Mystery Science Theater 3000 reviews:
Executive Decision (1996)
Here's MST-3000's Mike Nelson:
"Executive Decision" is my favorite movie ever, if only because it killed off Steven Seagal very early into the film. The greasy, thick-skulled mumbler is exactly the kind of person we need less of in this world. He reminds me of my old gym coach, a chilling association. All gym coaches everywhere are evil...
As for the movie, sans Seagal, it actually manages to maintain short bursts of tension and is refreshingly free of the humorless, staccato clichés that teem around every other flick in the genre. Plus, I can’t help it, I like Kurt Russell. He and Goldie Hawn have most assuredly made some unholy pact with the fallen angel, that they manage to look a lithesome twenty-nine when they are in fact both over eighty, and without the pained, sandblasted look of the horrible Frankenstein’s monster that Cher has become. But forgiving him that, he’s a likable chap, and I wouldn’t mind getting a beer with him, my highest praise.
The plot of E.D., as its fans call it, involves some Middle Eastern terrorists skyjacking a 747 loaded with a poison nerve gas that they intend to rain down on Washington, D.C. There’s no downside, as far as I can see, but the residents of our nation’s capital feel differently and so enlist Seagal, a special forces man, and Russell, an expert on terrorists, to board the plane while airborne and defuse the situation lest the world be deprived of a Newt Gingrich, an Orrin Hatch, or a Dick Armey.
It’s not bad, and remember, it’s 97 percent Steven Seagal—free! It’s 100 percent Jean-Claude Van Damme-free! Enjoy in good health.
You may be able to view this movie in your very own home! See Monstervision page for time & date if showing this week. "Executive Decision" is scheduled various times in January on Cinemax
"Executive Decision" availabilty on video and on DVD from Amazon.com
Books by Michael Nelson available from Amazon.com include Movie Megacheese. Mike's episodes of Mystery Science Theater 3000 are available from Amazon.com on both video and on DVD, and he co-wrote the MST3000 book
When military planes have been ordered to fire on the 747 -
747 Captain: Jesus Christ! What the hell are they doing?
First Officer: Looks like they're getting ready to light us up
* The name of Steven Seagal's character, Austin Travis, is derived from the city of Austin, Texas, which is located in Travis County
* Messages are received on the F-117 on a device called the CRM-115, obviously a reference to the CRM-114 in Dr. Strangelove (1964)
* Like Stargate (1994), this movie features a small military team sent into a dangerous and unprecedented situation along with a small number of civilian specialists. In that movie, Kurt was the military team leader; this time he's a civilian
* At the end of the movie, Kurt asks Jean (Halle Berry) if she likes hockey, and she replies, "Hockey? No, I only like baseball." At the time, Berry was married to then-Atlanta Braves outfielder David Justice
* Baker (Whip Hubley) mentions his erstwhile distaste for Navy pilots (and the Navy in general). Hubley played a Navy pilot in MonsterVision movie Top Gun (1986)
* Steven Seagal originally refused to do his death scene for fear his fans would not like it. Director Stuart Baird insisted he must do it as scripted, though Seagal held up filming for a few days and suggested that the manner in which it happened wouldn't realistically cause him to die. Finally after threat of contractual breach, Seagal acted the death scene as scripted
Fun Fact: Since 9-11-01, helicopter gunships hover over Times Square, N.Y. every New Year's Eve, just in case terrorists try something.
© 2000 Michael J. Nelson. All rights reserved, except in the case of brief quotations embodied in critical articles & reviews. Both the movie and Mike's review of it came out before 9-11-01. No relation to the 1973 movie "Executive Action" about a JFK assassination conspiracy