Could Have Been Good
rich2001a | Cincinnati, Ohio United States | 09/02/2001
(1 out of 5 stars)
"Held For Ransom stars Zachery Ty Bryan, Jordan Brower, and Randy Spelling as three high school kids who are kidnapped, along with two girls, when their school bus is hijacked. Dennis Hopper plays the leader of the kidnappers who decide to ask the kids' wealthy parents to pay a large ransom to have their sons and daughters released.The idea behind the movie is basically good. Based on the book Ransom, the stories are pretty similar. The only real difference is instaed of being held hostage in the middle of winter in the mountains, the kids are held in a hot and sweaty swamp in Florida.The movie was poorly made. It is filled with bad camera angles and scenes are bably cut and spliced together. The main actors, Bryan, Brower, Spelling, and Hopper are normally solid actors. However, Held For Ransom makes all four look like they are rank amatures who are making a movie for a college film class rather than one to be sold for profit. An example of this is how the three boys are supposed to be tied up, but manage to get their hands free to brace several falls. The camera shots show them actually putting their hands behind thier backs once they hit the ground!While poor filming and acting plagues Held For Ransom, the worst part is the liberal use of the F word and other obseneties. It seems that every five minutes or so, Hopper or Bryan unleash an obscene tirade. This makes the already bad movie unbearable to watch.The writers and producers had a good oportunity to take a typically far fetched story and make it into a decent action film. They picked good actors to play the roles, but gave them nothing solid to work with. In short, they blew it."
DENNIS THE MENACE
Michael Butts | Martinsburg, WV USA | 06/16/2005
(3 out of 5 stars)
"Dennis Hopper must have his name on producers lists for roles that require sadistic, unbridled menace. In HELD FOR RANSOM, he plays a kidnapper with little scruples and a maniacal laugh, and he does well in it. Debi Mazur as his hick wife is very good as well. Hopper murders a bus driver and then hijacks a bus so he can get five rich kids and hold them for ransom. Zachery Ty Bryan, Danny Spelling head the cast of kids and we get Morgan Fairchild, Timothy Bottoms, John Getz and Joan van Ark as the worried parents. There is an unexpected twist at the end you may not see coming, and overall, HELD FOR RANSOM is an okay film."