The 6th Day (2000)

THE 6TH DAY is an unexciting, uneventful, near future-set Schwarzen-
egger suspenser about a charter helicopter pilot and thick European-
accented family man who, one sunny birthday, is unknowingly (and il-
legally!) cloned and then targeted for immediate term-i-na-tion.  (In
this not-so-brave new world, only animal replication is allowed, as 
an inspired, mall-set sequence shows, with an ingratiating salesman 
trying to pump Arnold up for a same-day pet replacement.)  Stuff hap-
pens.  Mayhem ensues.  Mike yawns, despite an entirely adequate scre-
enplay filled with promising premise, well-posed moral questions, and 
a host of nifty, forward-thinking details.  Like the "heads up" dis-
play on a pro-football player's helmet face shield.  Or a "virtual 
girlfriend" that's both smart-enough to cover herself up when, uh, 
coitally interrupted *and* offer said interruptee a beer.  If he's 
male.  Where this one fails to rise-enough to the occasion is in its 
lead casting and overall direction.  Since Schwarz plays a "normal" 
person-- albeit a very muscular one-- he's disallowed from doing what 
he does best:  robots or cartoon heroes.  So he's awful.  (That is, 
awful but appealingly so.  I mean, the goof can't help but project 
*some* charm...)  Needless to say, Arnie's dramatic non-presence also 
renders his *character* entirely uninteresting.  And so, when the 
first pan of Macguffins is served about a half-hour in, the film's 
Viewer Interest Factor (VIF) barely rises.  

For the testosterone cravers, there are action sequences, too.  Re-
grettably, they're rendered less-effective by lapses in both logic 
(see: car chase, Cadillac) and FX quality (where's the accompanying 
snow spray during a low-flying canyon race?).  As for the *non*-ac-
tion scenes, they lack a fundamental fluidity, their shot sequences 
feeling jerky and slightly off-kilter.  (Don't like those "spatial 
leaps," either, when we blink and the characters are suddenly some-
where else.)  Back to the script, Arnie's character isn't explained, 
either.  Where did he learn to snap necks and wrestle guns away from 
bad guys.  Maybe that's explained in the second hour, which we mis-
sed, as the increasingly blurry, complained-twice-already focus at 
Raleigh's Carmike 15 cinched an already strained deal.  Didn't get 
our money back, though, as we were admitted using passes refunded 
from a *previous* walk-out.  Oh, the humanity...  With Tony Goldwyn, 
Michael Rapaport, Michael Rooker, Sarah Wynter, Wendy Crewson, and 
even Robert Duvall, all of whom sleepwalk through their performances 
with vary degrees of somnambulism.  Roger Spottiswoode, auteur of 
such other intense, action-intensive fare as STOP! OR MY MOM WILL 
SHOOT and TURNER AND HOOTCH, directs.  Cormac Wibberley and Marianne 
Wibberley are credited with the screenplay.  (Rated "R"/124 min.)
Grade: W/O

Copyright 2000 by Michael J. Legeros
Movie Hell is a trademark of Michael J. Legeros

Home   |   Recommended   |   Reviews   |   Views   |   Letters   |   Links   |   FAQ   |   Search!

Please report problems to
Copyright 2001 by Michael J. Legeros -Movie Hell™ is a trademark of Michael J. Legeros