Split Second

1992 Directed by Tony Maylam. Starring Rutger Hauer, Kim Cattrall.

REVIEWED By Marc Savlov, Fri., May 8, 1992

Let's get this straight right up front: this film is silly, pointless, absurd, confusing, asinine, and more than a little fun. If you don't mind watching a British sci-fi cheapie with more “fucks” per frame than the last Eddie Murphy movie and less cohesive plot logic than The Ren and Stimpy Show, then you just might find Split Second to be a goofy way to waste ninety-odd minutes of your life. The year is 2008, and London is has become a partially submerged hellhole thanks to unchecked global warming. Police zip about in speedboats and fortified Jeeps, popping off shots at the city's burgeoning rat population and trying to track down a mysterious serial killer who devours the hearts of his victims a la Hannibal Lecter. Enter Hauer as Harley Stone, a hard-boiled future-cop who, much to his dismay, finds himself partnered with a young, bookish rookie straight out of Oxford. If this is starting to sound a bit cliched, it is. There's an exchange here between a couple of higher-ups discussing Officer Stone's dangerously maverick tendencies and the fact that his last partner was killed while Stone had his back turned: “But they say he's the best in the business,” one of them remarks. “He is,” returns the other, stonily gazing up at the darkening sky. I had to laugh, and so will you, I think. As Split Second barrels on, the film eventually loses complete interest in maintaining any sort of intelligent story line. Cattrall appears midway through to provide a few screams and requisite shower shots, but her character seems to have been penciled in at the last moment. The filmmakers also toy with the notion of a psychic link between Stone and his quarry, as well as throwing a few assorted occult tie-ins, but to no avail. Split Second turns out to be one of those dreaded “so-bad-it's-good” debacles, and a marginal one at that. Ed Wood, where are you when we need you?

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Split Second, Tony Maylam, Rutger Hauer, Kim Cattrall

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