Proof of Life (2000)

Proof of Life is more an interesting idea than an intelligent or well done thriller. The whole concept of the politics involved in K&R (kidnap and rescue) are duly fascinating. But Proof decides to build a different film around this premise and detours into mediocrity. The film ends with the standard take-down in the jungle I’ve seen many times over except I have the pleasure of seeing David Caruso do it this time.

David Morse is an environmentalist hired by an oil conglomerate to build a dam in a small fictional Ecuador looking country. He gets kidnapped by some radical revolutionaries and is held for ransom. Russel Crowe steps in as the hired K&R expert from Morse’s insurance agency.

The supposed romance on set between Crowe and Ryan is beyond my guess. On screen they have little chemistry and any romance bubbling rates a DOA on Dr. Love’s scale. Meg Ryan betrays herself as an actress and wanders the film minus a bra and constantly sniffling.

During play is a long going friction between Morse, who starts to look like he was auditioning for Cast Away, and some revolutionary hot-headed youth. It’s almost laughable the more it goes on. The will-they-or-won’t-they romance gets snuffed every time we cut back to Ryan’s husband enduring hardships. The editing and the concept ruin whatever sexual tension is supposed to build. The flick also has an unsettling theme that if you aren’t an English speaking white person you can’t be trusted.

The film starts off well with Crowe tangled in Russia but shifts into the mundane rather fast. Proof of Life is proof that what transpires off camera doesn’t always connect on camera.

Nate’s Grade: C+

About natezoebl

One man. Many movies. I am a cinephile (which spell-check suggests should really be "epinephine"). I was told that a passion for movies was in his blood since I was conceived at a movie convention. While scientifically questionable, I do remember a childhood where I would wake up Saturday mornings, bounce on my parents' bed, and watch Siskel and Ebert's syndicated TV show. That doesn't seem normal. At age 17, I began writing movie reviews and have been unable to stop ever since. I was the co-founder and chief editor at (2007-2014) and now write freelance. I have over 1400 written film reviews to my name and counting. I am also a proud member of the Central Ohio Film Critics Association (COFCA) since 2012. In my (dwindling) free time, I like to write uncontrollably. I wrote a theatrical genre mash-up adaptation titled "Our Town... Attacked by Zombies" that was staged at my alma mater, Capital University in the fall of 2010 with minimal causalities and zero lawsuits. I have also written or co-written sixteen screenplays and pilots, with one of those scripts reviewed on industry blog Script Shadow. Thanks to the positive exposure, I am now also dipping my toes into the very industry I've been obsessed over since I was yea-high to whatever people are yea-high to in comparisons.

Posted on November 30, 2000, in 2000 Movies and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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