Out of Sight (1998) – Review

Jack Foley (George Clooney) is a career bank robber that manages to break out of jail, with the assistance of his friend Buddy Bragg (Ving Rhames). The pair also manage to kidnap a United States Marshal in the process, but after the Marshal manages to escape, she begins to plot the demise of the cons that kidnapped her, only to have second thoughts after finding one attractive and sharing a connection with him. An impressive picture that was released in 1998, and one that is still highly rated among some movie lovers.

Rating: 4.5 out of 5.

Director: Steven Soderbergh
Writers: Elmore Leonard, Scott Frank
Starring: George Clooney, Jennifer Lopez, Don Cheadle, Ving Rhames, Steve Zahn

A film that often gets overlooked for other more prominent release from this era, Out of Sight managed to surprise me greatly after having the chance to watch it this past week. For me, the vast array of positives far outweighed the negatives, with the film featuring an effective storyline, some wild action and even a hint of comedy injected at times. Some say this reminds them of a Quentin Tarantino style production and that’s a notion I’d agree with, especially when taking into consideration the intense script and unpredictability of certain scenes.

One thing worth noting was the way in which the filmmakers managed to showcase America at this time. The film had a very distinctive retro feel, which was aided majorly by the inspiring soundtrack, along with some beautiful cinematography to go with it. The filmmakers opted to use the colourful and vibrant setting of Miami for a large majority of the filming, with inner-city Detroit providing a stark contrast from time to time – especially in the later stages.

Another aspect of the film that seemed to hold importance, was the strength of each of the characters on display. The two leads, George Clooney and Jennifer Lopez, possessed more than enough chemistry and likeability between themselves to spearhead the majority of the flick, along with some incredibly engaging, well written, sharp and at times witty dialogue too. 

As touched upon, George Clooney and Jennifer Lopez starred as Jack Foley and Karen Sisco, respectively, but the support cast was equally as important. Don Cheadle adopted the role of Maurice Miller, with Ving Rhames playing Buddy Bragg, two key characters within the flick. Elsewhere, Steve Zahn portrayed Glenn Michaels and there were even appearances from Viola Davis and Samuel L. Jackson – albeit very short and sweet ones.

All in all, Out of Sight is a film that I’ve been led to believe didn’t fair too well at the box office upon its original release in 1998, but almost twenty-four years later, it strikes me as an epic trip down memory lane and a film I’d recommend strongly.

“It’s like seeing someone for the first time, like you can be passing on the street, and you look at each other for a few seconds, and there’s this kind of a recognition like you both know something. Next moment the person’s gone, and it’s too late to do anything about it.”

Jack Foley – Out of Sight

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