John Badham

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Nick Of Time Review


OK
The experiment was this: Make an action/suspense movie that takes place in real time. That is, 90 minutes of film shows us 90 consecutive minutes in the lives of the hero and villains. Real time has been done before (see also Alfred Hitchcock's Rope, which is not only in real time, but has the appearance of being one continuous shot with no cuts). Real time has never been done quite like this.

In Nick of Time, director John Badham has taken a traditional three-act thriller and jammed it into a sparse 90 minutes. The plot follows accountant Gene Watson (Johnny Depp), now a single father of 7-year old Lynn (Courtney Chase). Arriving at Union Station in downtown Los Angeles, Gene and Lynn are picked from the crowd by the enigmatic Mr. Smith (Christopher Walken) for a devious task. Smith gives Gene a gun and a little over an hour to commit a murder or else his daughter will be killed. The catch? The target is the governor of California (Marsha Mason). Watson then has to balance the life of his daughter with the far-ranging conspiracy he finds himself caught up in. And time is running out.

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