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Directed by Russell

It started with Goldeneye and Hackers, continued through Copycat and Mission Impossible, and Eraser is now the latest instalment in an increasingly obvious trend: any blockbuster worth its production budget, especially where the target audience is ‘young people’, is going to have to glamorise information technology. In other words, it is de rigueur to have lots of scenes with people fooling around at personal computer terminals. I have no animus against this phenomenon, being a fully paid up surfer myself. The problem with Eraser is that there is still too much broth and not enough brain (well, artificial intelligence), too much man and not enough machine. Still, if you manage to get Arnie to play your action hero, you’re not going to let those rippling muscles go to waste, now are you?




Schwarzenegger stars as the best of the elite federal marshals working for the Federal Witness Protection Program, one of the government’s most clandestine agencies. When all hope is gone, he moves in and saves the lives of those at risk by eliminating all evidence of their existence. Operating in secrecy, he is John Kruger, otherwise known as ‘Eraser’.
While working at one of the nation’s leading defence contractors, Lee Cullen (Vanessa Williams) inadvertently uncovers a scheme to deliver one of the most advanced super-weapons ever developed, the rail gun, into the hands of the Russian Mafia, thus shifting the balance of world power. What she doesn’t know is that the conspiracy reaches the highest levels of government, and they will stop at nothing to keep her from spilling the beans. She needs a protector. Enter Arnie.
While I like a Total Recall or a Terminator 2 as much as the next man, Eraser is Schwarzenegger freewheeling in mid-gear. James Caan is good as the villain of the piece, but director Charles Russell hardly comes recommended after hokum like The Mask and The Blob.
As if you need to be told: the good end happily, and the bad unhappily. That is what Fiction means.

First published in 46A









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