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"MAXIMUM RISK"
(1996) (Jean Claude Van Damme, Natasha Henstridge) (R)

Alcohol/
Drugs
Blood/Gore Disrespectful/
Bad Attitude
Frightening/
Tense Scenes
Guns/
Weapons
Mild Heavy Moderate Moderate Extreme
Imitative
Behavior
Jump
Scenes
Music
(Scary/Tense)
Music
(Inappropriate)
Profanity
Mild None Mild None Moderate
Sex/
Nudity
Smoking Tense Family
Scenes
Topics To
Talk About
Violence
Heavy Minor Mild Minor Extreme


QUICK TAKE:
Action: A man investigates the life and death of an identical twin brother he didn't know existed.
PLOT:
Alain Moreau (JEAN-CLAUDE VAN DAMME), a retired French soldier, learns of the existence of his identical twin brother, Mikhail Suverov, after he's been killed. Alain decides to assume Mikhail's identity to learn about who he was and why he was killed. With the help of Mikhail's girlfriend, Alex Minetti (NATASHA HENSTRIDGE), he learns that his brother was involved with the Russian mafia. The mob, fronted by Ivan (ZACH GRENIER), a power hungry man, isn't happy to see "Mikhail" because he had a list of mob members and corrupt FBI agents he was going to turn over to the authorities. As Alain digs deeper and deeper he has many dangerous encounters with both the Russian mob and the "bad" FBI agents.
WILL KIDS WANT TO SEE IT?
If they're fans of Van Damme films, they will.
WHY THE MPAA RATED IT: R
For strong violence, and for some sexuality and language.
CAST AS ROLE MODELS:
  • JEAN-CLAUDE VAN DAMME plays the former soldier who searches for the reason behind his brother's death and uses violence (and lots of it) to defend himself.
  • NATASHA HENSTRIDGE plays the former stripper turned hostess who helps Van Damme with his goal.
  • ZACH GRENIER plays a ruthless killer.
  • CAST, CREW, & TECHNICAL INFO

    HOW OTHERS RATED THIS MOVIE


    OUR TAKE: 5 out of 10
    If you can lower your standards and accept that Van Damme is limited as an actor and that this movie's dramatic scenes are just filler between all of the fighting and action, you might just enjoy this one. Van Damme should take a lesson from Arnold Schwarzenegger. Neither is a threat to take home an Oscar, but at least Arnie acknowledges that and his performances are presented with a nod and a wink. Van Damme tries his hardest to be a serious dramatic actor, but that in fact gives the movie its unintentional humorous side. Henstridge is there strictly as eye candy and the plot certainly won't keep you on the edge of your seat. Still, the action scenes are well choreographed and if you've enjoyed Van Damme's previous films, you won't be disappointed in this one that we give a 5 out of 10.
    OUR WORD TO PARENTS:
    If you've seen previous Van Damme films, the content of this one won't come as a surprise to you. There's a lot of fighting sequences and the one requisite sex scene (which is less graphic than in some of his previous films). There's also a lot of graphic violence and deaths committed by the bad guys that younger eyes probably shouldn't see. As usual, we suggest you read all of the category listings to get an accurate view of the movie's content.

    ALCOHOL OR DRUG USE
  • A flight attendant offers Alain vodka, but he refuses.
  • People are seen smoking and drinking in a restaurant.
  • Alain drinks vodka.
  • BLOOD/ GORE
  • Mikhail's body is seen lying through a smashed windshield and there's some blood on his face.
  • A man is seen with a bloody gunshot wound to the head.
  • A secretary is seen with some bloody gashes on her head (but she' s alive).
  • A cab driver is shot and is bloody from the wound.
  • Many people that Alain beats up are a bit bloody afterwards.
  • Blood pours from the mob leader's chest after he's been stabbed.
  • A dead bank manager is rather bloody.
  • Alain repeatedly stabs an assailant with a knife and the scene gets bloody after a while.
  • Ivan's driver is shot and blood splatters all over the windshield.
  • Dead and cut open pigs are seen hanging in a slaughterhouse.
  • DISRESPECTFUL/BAD ATTITUDE
  • All of the bad guys (including the mob members and two corrupt FBI agents) have both type of attitudes.
  • Some local punks threaten Alain because he's white and in their neighborhood.
  • FRIGHTENING/TENSE SCENES
  • See "Violence" for scenes that also fall into this category (in particular a fight/rescue in a burning building that may be scary to younger kids).
  • GUNS/WEAPONS
  • Guns/Knives: Used to threaten, injure or kill people. See "Violence" for details.
  • IMITATIVE BEHAVIOR
  • Kids will love to imitate all of the martial arts action (punches, kicks, etc...).
  • Mikhail jumps across an alley from one balcony to another.
  • JUMP SCENES
  • None.
  • MUSIC (SCARY/TENSE)
  • A few scenes have mild suspenseful music.
  • MUSIC (INAPPROPRIATE)
  • None.
  • PROFANITY
  • 3 "f" words, 5 "s" words, 4 hells, and 2 uses of "God," and 1 use each of "Jesus Christ," "Oh God," "Jesus," and "Oh my God" as exclamations.
  • SEX/NUDITY
  • Alain and Alex passionately kiss and she takes her shirt off (but still has on a bra), but nothing happens as he finally tells her that he's not Mikhael (whom she thought he was).
  • A chase scene leads into a strip joint where women in skimpy outfits are seen dancing suggestively. One woman runs her hand down inside her thong bikini bottom and feels her crotch. Other women's bare butts are seen as they dance around the strip club poles.
  • Alex's bare breasts and part of her butt are seen as she changes clothes.
  • Ivan's bare butt is seen in a locker room.
  • Alain and Alex have sex in a bathroom. Her bare breasts are seen and some sexual movement is observed and moaning is heard.
  • SMOKING
  • People are seen smoking and drinking in a restaurant.
  • Alex smokes a cigarette.
  • TENSE FAMILY SCENES
  • Alain's mother tells him that she was sick when the twins were born and that she had to sell him for money to survive.
  • Alain learns that his twin brother (that he didn't know about) is dead.
  • TOPICS TO TALK ABOUT
  • The mafia.
  • VIOLENCE
  • Mikhail is chased through the narrow streets of Niece by people who want him dead. Many street side tables and carts are knocked over and people dive out of the way to avoid being run over. The chase proceeds into a building where Mikhail kicks open a door, rushes to the window and then leaps to the balcony across the alley. The balcony begins to pull away from the wall and he falls back to the street. The chase then continues as he jumps on a small motorized cart and the bad guys follow him. He eventually runs into a wall and flies through the air, smashing into and through the windshield of a car, dying instantly.
  • It's mentioned that it looked like Mikhail had been previously tortured.
  • Alain goes to meet a man but finds his office in flames and the man dead from a gunshot wound to the head. Alain goes to the aid of a trapped secretary but a hit man begins shooting at them. Alain then fights the man (punches, kicks, etc...) who eventually throws Alain out the window. He hangs on the shutters and then makes his way back into the room where they fight again until Alain kicks the guy in the face and then throws him into the fire where he disappears. Alain and the secretary just make it out as the burning ceiling begins to fall into the room.
  • Alain fights off three mafia men who attack him, one with a switchblade. He hits and kicks the assailants until he's able to escape.
  • Ivan has one of his men partially strangled after he failed to kill Alain.
  • Ivan and his men threaten both a motel clerk and another worker as they search for Alain and Alex. When they finally spot them up on the roof, they shoot at them and then chase them down the stairs into a strip joint. There they push people out of the way (one man falls from a second floor balcony) as they chase after the two.
  • Outside, the men fire machine guns at a cab that's holding Alain and Alex. It turns out the cab driver was shot and he dies in Alain's arms.
  • Alain fights off more people who are after him. He bends back a guy's wrist and then knocks him out. He then really pummels another man, and ends up repeatedly hitting the guy with a large mirror.
  • Alain beats up two corrupt FBI agents who have grabbed Alex.
  • A hit man walks in and stabs the mafia leader in the chest. Alain then fights with this man and as their fight tumbles out into other rooms, Ivan walks in and shoots the leader and his men dead. Alain eventually escapes.
  • Outside the men chase after and shoot at Alain in their car. Other cars are run into and people have to dodge both the cars and the bullets. Alain ends up on some railroad tracks where one of the men chasing him is hit by a speeding train. Alain falls through a grate and dangles there until he drops to the street below.
  • Alain finds a dead bank manager and is then grabbed into an elevator where he fights with another man. They struggle and kick and punch (and Alain bites the guy's leg) until the man appears to have the upper hand. But Alain maneuvers a dropped knife into position on the floor and then kicks it backwards into the man's foot. They struggle a bit more until Alain repeatedly jams the knife into the man's side and he screams in agony before dying.
  • Ivan has a police friend of Alain's as his hostage inside a van. The two fight in the back while the driver shoots a machine gun at other police, killing several of them. Alain then shoots the driver dead and the van hits another car that explodes. The van rolls over on its side and catches on fire. Alain rescues his friend while leaving Ivan in the van that explodes, knocking Alain and the cop to the street.
  • There is a final chase scene where Alain is after the two corrupt FBI agents who fire their guns at him. They all end up crashing into a slaughterhouse where the agents shoot at Alain. Then it's a cat and mouse game as they try to find and kill Alain while holding a gun to Alex's head. He shoots one of the agents in the shoulder and the other then comes after Alain with a chainsaw. Alain finally shoots him dead.



  • Reviewed September 11, 1996

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