A formative action blockbuster for me that, for better or worse, formed the mould in my mind along with JURASSIC PARK and STARGATE for what blockbuster entertainment looks like. So, despite its obvious defects—gaping plot holes, thin characterisation, a jarring sense of American triumphalism—, I can’t help but look on it favourably or see it as anything less than great.
Even with that bias in mind, I do think this has a refreshing sense of sincerity that is often absent from modern blockbusters particularly in the familial relationships and in the redemption of Randy Quaid’s character. There’s a simplicity to the film’s conception of good vs. evil that reminds me of Stephen King’s The Stand and his works’ wider idea of white good vs. red evil. This sincerity does a lot to convey the seriousness of the film’s global stakes without being undercut by irony.