"You're incredible, Ryback. It's a shame you're not cooking for us."
Title: Under Siege
Director: Andrew Davis
Writer: J. F. Lawton
Release Date: 9th October 1992
Steven Seagal - Casey Ryback
Tommy Lee Jones - William Stranix
Gary Busey - Commander Krill
Patrick O'Neal - Captain Adams
Erika Eleniak - Jordan Tate
There is a party aboard the US battleship Missouri, which is on it's way to be decommisioned, celebrating the birthday of Captain Adams. The warship has a full nuclear arsenal and the president is on board. A band led by William Stranix has been hired, along with Playboy playmate Jordan Tate (played by real-life Playmate of the Month Erika Eleniak) to jump out of the birthday cake.
As it turns out, William Stranix is in fact the leader of a gang who take over the ship (with the help of ship's commander Krill) in order to steal the warheads and hold the captain and crew hostage. The fate of all the passengers hangs in the balance, but the ship's chef, Casey Ryback, turns out to be an ex-Navy Seal who sets out on a one man rescue mission, with Ms Tate as sidekick. While she turns out to be more of a hindrance than a help, Ryback manages to tear his way through the ship, leading to an eventual showdown with Stranix himself.
Enjoyable is probably the fairest word to use in relation to Under Siege. It's a straight action flick, and as such works very well; it has everything such a movie needs - a macho lead in Seagal, topless eye-candy in Erika Eleniak and plenty of stabbings, eye-gouging and general violence. What more could you possibly want?
Seriously though, while certainly not a masterpiece the film is quality entertainment - the concept works surprisingly well and Seagal is almost perfect (somehow his deadpan 'acting' style works) in what is almost undoubtedly his best film. Not recommended for a date, Under Siege is nontheless a brilliant popcorn movie.
Followed in 1995 by the execrable Under Siege 2: Dark Terrority which is the same story, but set on a train. Under Siege 3 looks set to make an appearance in 2004.
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