A technothriller singularly lacking in both thrills and technological wizardry, OPERATION INTERCEPT deals with a villainous Soviet scientist's attempt to destroy America.
Vengeful Francesca Zaborszin (Natasha Andreichenko) believes the U.S. government staged the suicide of her father, a Soviet scientist and defector. The industrious villainess sets up her own base in the deserts of Kazakhstan, wielding powerful electromagnetic pulses channelled though orbiting
navigation satellites to attack and bring down civilian aircraft. She also captures the revolutionary high-altitude fighter-bomber Aurora One. Summoned to strike back are two utterly nondescript Top Gunners, Maj. Paul Gordon Pruitt (Bruce Payne) and Maj. Andy Aldrich (John Stockwell), who soar
into action in Aurora Two. Forced down by Zaborszin, the pair are caught and tortured by her private army of sinister Slavs, but Pruitt escapes. Eventually, tedious plot twists lead both Zaborszin and Pruitt to take to the skies in separate Auroras. She penetrates D.C. airspace to make a bombing
run at the White House, but Pruitt's afterburners turn her into a fireball.
There is a feeble attempt at intrigue over who really killed old Dr. Zaborszin, a matter not resolved until the final scene, by which time it is quite irrelevant who did. Unlike its antiheroine (played with a certain degree of sympathy by Andreichenko), OPERATION INTERCEPT never once catches fire.
There are pursuits and fights aplenty, but it is easy to sense the filmmaker's desperation to stretch the skullduggery to feature length, as hackneyed characters defy all reasonable norms of human behavior and deliver cliched dialogue ("Come on, you can do it!"). The unconvincing airborne
sequences rely heavily on computerized flight simulations, and indeed the digital graphics make the Aurora planes amazingly "realistic" in the sense that they sure enough appear solid and three-dimensional, but they look no different from sleek, little toy jets bouncing along on well-concealed
wires. Even that has its limits: the camera cuts away to avoid ever showing a landing. In the U.S., OPERATION INTERCEPT taxied directly to home video.(Profanity, violence.)
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- Released: 1995
- Rating: R
- Review: A technothriller singularly lacking in both thrills and technological wizardry, OPERATION INTERCEPT deals with a villainous Soviet scientist's attempt to destroy America. Vengeful Francesca Zaborszin (Natasha Andreichenko) believes the U.S. government sta… (more)