The M.O.W.'s Movie Review of Murder at 1600

Rating of

Murder at 1600

Good twists make for a pretty good mystery
The M.O.W. - wrote on 08/03/08

After stopping a former government worker from committing suicide on a public street, Washington, DC police detective "Regis" (Wesley Snipes) and his partner, "Detective Stengel" (Dennis Miller) are relaxing at a local bar when "Regis" gets a call on his cell phone to have him report to the White House, where a gorgeous woman (Mary Moore) was found stabbed to death in a public bathroom.

"Detctive Regis" is paired up by Secret Service agent, and Olympic Sharpshooting Gold Medalist "Nina Chance" (Dianne Lane).

Eventually, with the evidence they uncover, the two believe that the murder is a small part of a bigger picture surrounding American hostages in North Korea. They are also believe that a member of the First Family itself is the prime suspect until new evidence is uncovered that shows that the family member is just a pawn in the much bigger picture.

Now wanted by Federal authorities themself, "Regis" and "Chance" have to go after the real murderer and stop "President Jack Neil" (Ronny Cox) from resigning.

Let me start off by saying there is a major mistake in this movie. As you know, the White House is Federal property. Because of this fact, the investigation would automatically go to the US Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI). Washington, DC Police Department would never be part of the investigation.

There are some pretty good performances in this movie. I personally thought the strongest performances were from Snipes, Lane (who I honestly thought was Ashley Judd because I didn't pay attention to the opening credits) and especially Alda. Other actors in the movie had to deal with weakly written characters.

In fact, the entire script was pretty weak. However, there are some really good twists in the story that keeps your attention. The only problem with the twists is that they don't allow the audience to keep guessing til the end. Instead, they start giving you the truth without it being revealed by "Regis" and "Agent Chance" to the audience. Actually, some of the truth is revealed by them. Then, we see those behind the conspiracy doing what they have to to stop the two.

You'd expect a lot of gun play in this movie, considering who is involved. However, there really isn't until the two leads are considered suspects. Only then do we have bullets flying. In fact, there is more hand-to-hand action than gun action.

One thing that isn't quite clear is why the conspirators are doing what they are doing. It is pretty obvious that they want to bring the hostages home, but trying to destroy a Presidency in the way they try is not all that clear.

There is a lot of implausible things in this movie. For example, the FBI being used to cover-up the truth is a little hard to believe. And using local police in an investigation on Federal property is a big mistake that somebody, possibly the author of the novel of which this movie is based upon, made. However, despite these flaws, it would still be a pretty good rental. Or, you can I suggest you check this out when you catch the movie on television.

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