Enemy of the State (1998) Review


Robert Clayton Dean is a lawyer who becomes the target by a corrupt politician and his N.S.A workers when he accidentally ended up with key evidence relating to a crime.


Enemy of the State does not take long to become a high intensity action film after the initial quiet build up showing that Robert Clayton Dean has a pretty normal life and goes about his job, married with a young son. Everything comes crashing down around him when a chance meeting with his old college friend Daniel Zavitz would put his life in massive danger.

Zavitz had a disc with video evidence of a crime being committed and had been running from the NSA. Dropping this in Dean’s bag without him even realising, then ending up dead. The thing is though even when trying to then look in the bag himself later nothing can actually be found. So where has the disc actually gone?

Dean’s life is then quickly destroyed, he is fired from his job, his bank accounts are frozen and his wife Carla wants nothing to do with him when photos surface of him with Rachel Banks, a woman who he had history with and also an affair a year earlier. He had no idea how many tracking devices had been placed on him and with his work contact with Rachel he believes that a man called Brill would be able to help him.

Everything is not as it seems though as the NSA are always a step ahead of what he is going to do next. Luckily the real Brill saves him and explains what he is up against. Climbing out of a window into another hotel room was certainly a highlight of the intensity he faced to stay alive. All while not having any idea what they thought he had.

The twists and turns are engaging throughout and I really did find this to be a top thrilling action film that had plenty going fo for it as well as good performances. Leading the line Will Smith in the type of role we just know he is perfect for, the action hero works very well and no comedy to be seen in this one really shows his acting in a different manner. Then we get the legend of Gene Hackman who is as always such a scene stealer, something that makes it even more enjoyable. Support is offered from Jon Voight, Regina King and then smaller roles for Jack Black (wasn’t expecting him in the film I must add), Scott Caan, Gabriel Byrne, Lisa Bonet and Jason Lee.

I’d certainly say that this highlights what Tony Scott did so effortlessly as a director creating the tension and amazing non-stop action constantly building the pace and suspense. Something that makes this film so watching and exciting.

3 thoughts on “Enemy of the State (1998) Review

    • Oh I totally agree about the tech in films, I like to view them as nostalgia and reminders of what it used to be like. Especially considering in 1998 I got my first home PC as started secondary school that year!

      Liked by 1 person

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