[Screen It]


(1996) (Nicolas Cage, Sean Connery, Ed Harris) (R)

Blood/Gore Disrespectful/
Bad Attitude
Tense Scenes
Minor Heavy Moderate Mild Extreme
Minor None Mild None Extreme
Smoking Tense Family
Topics To
Talk About
Moderate Minor Minor Minor Extreme

Action/Adventure: A former inmate joins a chemical expert to stop a military takeover of Alcatraz Island.
Stanley Goodspeed (NICOLAS CAGE), is a chemical expert for the FBI. He's called to duty when Brigadier General Frances Hummel (ED HARRIS) takes over Alcatraz Island with 81 hostages. Hummel believes that the government has betrayed its fallen special forces soldiers and their surviving families. So, he wants the White House to cough up one hundred million dollars or he'll launch his deadly gas filled rockets on the populace of San Francisco. To assist Goodspeed, the FBI pulls out John Mason (SEAN CONNERY), a former British spy who has been incarcerated (for stealing top secret J. Edgar Hoover files) for the past thirty years, several of which were on Alcatraz. As he was the only one to escape the "Rock," the FBI believes he's the only one who can get back in. Thus, Goodspeed, Mason and a Navy seal team make their way to do battle with Hummel and his men and save the hostage and the residents of San Francisco.
Teenage males will definitely want to as it falls directly in line with the producer's other testosterone filled films (Top Gun, Crimson Tide, etc...) which cater to that audience.
For strong violence, language and a sex scene.
  • NICOLAS CAGE plays the "science geek" who must pull up his britches and become physical with the bad guys. He mixes brain and brawn and is a relatively good role model.
  • SEAN CONNERY plays a man imprisoned without a trial who, although he always tries to escape and does kill a lot of people in self defense, is an honorable and wise man.
  • ED HARRIS plays the disgruntled military officer who, although he steals weapons, take hostages and threatens to gas a city, is just doing what he thinks his right to correct an injustice. Plus the fact that he can't bring himself to harm anyone is a good trait. Still, his overall outward actions are not good.


  • Goodspeed tells his girlfriend that he's had a glass of wine to wind down after defusing a bomb.
  • Blisters form on a commando's face after he's been exposed to a deadly gas. Soon his whole face and hands are covered with erupting blisters.
  • Goodspeed throws up in a bathroom sink after he learns he's going on the rescue mission.
  • There is a moderate amount of blood on the floor and on the dead bodies of the Navy seals after they've been shot.
  • A dead Navy seal hangs upside down from a ladder with lots of blood running down his face.
  • A bad guy is shot in the feet with a machine gun and there's a good amount of blood.
  • A dead guy's leg noticeably twitches.
  • Goodspeed gives a very gory description of what the poison gas does to a body.
  • Goodspeed shoots a bad guy and blood spurts out.
  • There is a bloody gun battle at the end, with bloody bodies, blood spurting, and a man leaving a bloody smear on the wall as he slides down it.
  • Goodspeed has to jam a large needle into his heart after he's been exposed to the deadly gas and afterwards he has convulsions.
  • Goodspeed's boss tears up the document that would have released Mason after he helped the feds.
  • While escaping from the feds, Mason steals a vehicle from a valet.
  • The bad guys, of course, have bad and disrespectful attitudes throughout.
  • A booby trapped box with a corrosive and deadly gas is opened by Goodspeed and an apprentice. As their gloves begin to dissolve, they find that the gas is also connected to an explosive and a timer. Tension builds as the gas eats away at their suits and the seconds tick down.
  • While it's mainly action filled, the chase scene through a hotel and then out onto the streets of San Francisco might be tense to some.
  • There's a Mexican standoff between the terrorists and the Navy seals with everyone holding machine guns on each other.
  • There are many scenes where the bad guys are hunting down or fighting with Goodspeed and Mason that some may find tense.
  • There is a 21-gun salute.
  • Toy guns: Used by Goodspeed and partner to shoot targets.
  • Machine guns/Handguns: Used throughout the movie to kill or try to kill others.
  • Guns/Knives: Held against or pointed at people's heads throughout the movie and occasionally used to kill people.
  • Hand grenades/Other explosives: Thrown at Goodspeed and Mason many times nearly killing them.
  • A "cat and mouse" contraption (steel balling rolling along knocking things over) ignites a doll. (The scene is played for laughs)
  • Goodwill, on recounting when he first got his chemistry set at a young age, says, "I blew my eyebrows off and we never saw the cat again." (Also played for laughs)
  • Phrases: "Shut up," "piss," "idiot," "sucker," and "butthole."
  • None.
  • There is moderately tense music during the gas bomb defusing scene described in "Frightening/Tense Scenes." The rest of the music is more action oriented.
  • None.
  • 49 "f" words (2 with the prefix "mother," and 1 used sexually), 31 "s" words, 11 hells, 6 "ass" words, 4 S.O.B.'s, 3 damns, 2 slang terms using male genitalia ("c*cksucker" and "pr*ck"), 1 crap, and 18 uses of "God" or "God damn," and 8 uses of "Jesus" or "Christ's sake" as exclamations.
  • A porno magazine, "Stone Age Cavegirls in the Raw," is pulled from a box, but no nudity is seen.
  • Goodspeed's girlfriend is pregnant. She states, "I'm unmarried, pregnant, and Catholic. This causes a big problem for me."
  • Goodspeed and his girlfriend have sex on a chair. She's atop him and rises up and down, but no nudity is seen although there is quite a bit of moaning.
  • An agent tells Mason to agree to the deal so that he'll be released "while you've still got a little lead in your pencil."
  • Mason refers to "bending over and taking it up the ass."
  • When Mason meets his twenty-something daughter for the first time, she reminds him that she's a product of his one night stand with her mother.
  • Referring to how this rescue attempt is different from his day to day prison life, Mason says, "It avoids the gang rapes."
  • Mason tells Goodspeed, "Losers talk about their "best." Winners go home and f*ck the prom queen."
  • Hummel smokes a cigar just once.
  • Just a minor scene between Mason and his daughter he's never met before.
  • Whether the government has forgotten about those who have died for their country.
  • Kidnaping, and whether it will occur while being a tourist.
  • A guard is shot and he falls out of a control tower landing hard on the pavement below.
  • Two guards are hit in the head and knocked out.
  • A commando shoots two guards (they are blown backwards, but later we learn they were hit with tranquilizers).
  • A commando injects a tranquilizer into a guard's throat.
  • Three more guards are shot with tranquilizers.
  • One of the green spheres containing deadly gas hits the floor and erupts. A commando is sealed in the room with it and dies an agonizing, blistery death.
  • Commandos hold their handguns on a guide's head.
  • Mason states (while preparing to get his hair cut), "You can't cut off anyone's balls with a hair trimmer."
  • Mason throws a FBI agent over a balcony edge with only a rope attached to him. Goodspeed pulls his gun and threatens Mason. Mason then lets go of the rope which Goodspeed grabs and Mason escapes.
  • There is a long chase sequence through a hotel where many people are knocked over and Mason slugs Goodspeed in the face. Then Goodspeed and other feds chase Mason through the streets of San Francisco. Many cars are damaged, destroyed, or blown up and a cable car is pushed off its tracks and crashes into many cars.
  • There is a big machine gun battle between the Navy seals and Hummel's men where all of the seals are killed.
  • Hummel's men drop several bombs down onto Goodspeed and Mason who just manage to get out of the way before the explosions.
  • Mason throws a knife which impales a bad guy through his throat.
  • There's another machine gun battle, where Mason ends up shooting under a desk and tearing up the bad guy's feet.
  • When a dying bad guy threatens to throw his hand grenade, Mason shoots an industrial air conditioner unit which falls and crushes the guy.
  • Mason sets a bad guy's legs on fire who then falls to his death.
  • Bad guys fire machine guns and throw grenades at Goodspeed and Mason on several occasions.
  • Goodspeed shoots a bad guy dead.
  • Terrorists pull out a hostage and hold a gun to his head to enforce their demands. Hummel then knees the guy in the stomach. Moments later he elbows Mason in the back of the neck.
  • A terrorist says, "I'll take pleasure in gutting you, boy."
  • Mason punches Goodspeed in the stomach as he tries to stop him from leaving.
  • Mason breaks a bad guy's neck.
  • A man is hit with, and pulled out of the building by, a rocket. He falls off and is impaled on a rusty pole.
  • Mason tosses a bad guy off a building.
  • Mason wraps a chain around a bad guy's neck, strangling him.
  • Both Goodspeed and Mason get into the obligatory fist fights with some bad guys.
  • Goodspeed stuffs a deadly gas sphere into a bad guy's mouth which erupts.

  • Reviewed June 7, 1996

    Other new and recent reviews include:

    [1917] [Bombshell] [Cats] [Little Women] [Spies In Disguise] [Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker] [Uncut Gems]

    Privacy Statement and Terms of Use and Disclaimer
    By entering this site you acknowledge to having read and agreed to the above conditions.

    All Rights Reserved,
    ©1996-2020 Screen It, Inc.