Demi Moore, Viggo Mortensen, James Caviezel, Jason Beghe
Demi Moore captured the Razzie award for Worst Actress for her performance in "G.I. Jane" as a woman enrolled into the Navy SEALS training program by an ambitious, largely self-motivated female senator(Anne Bancroft). Everyone expects her to fail, but...well, you know the rest of the story.
I suppose I should be kinder than this subpar "D" rating for a film that doesn't actually aim very high but usually hits its mark. As directed by Ridley Scott, "G.I. Jane" is a high energy, intense and fairly mindless way to spend a Saturday afternoon. Moore completely invests herself in the character, turning a potential caricature (aka "Private Benjamin") into a genuine soldier that it's hard not to root for throughout the film.
Yet, I actually didn't root for her and I didn't care for her one bit. In a film such as this one, it becomes vital that one care about the character who endures, who survives and who succeeds. I never cared about Moore, despite the tremendous rigors of SEALS training. I never cared if she suffered, I never cared if she succeeded. I enjoyed some of the action, but that was it.
The supporting performances were largely too under-developed to care about, including Jason Beghe, James Caviezel and Viggo Mortensen as her training instructor. The script? Well, this is a Ridley Scott film so the script consisted of well placed and meaningful grunts.
A few decent action scenes are not enough to salvage a bad, somewhat corny performance by Moore along with what appears to be a mostly improvisational script. While "G.I. Jane" was no "Private Benjamin," well this critic would rather have Private Benjamin fighting for him anyday.
© Written by Richard Propes
The Independent Critic