A burnt out cop, sick of the violence of his Los Angeles beat takes a job as police chief in a quiet small town community but its tranquility is shattered when three petty thieves take a rich family hostage.
To describe this film as Die Hard with an annoying child and no laughs would be a little unfair, but not a million miles from the truth. Hostage is nicely shot and Willis brings his usual star presence to the mix, but it’s just so very generic. The characters and plot are all so predictable that you know how it’s going to end right from the very start – the usual cocktail of S.W.A.T. teams, hostage negotiation and brave kids sticking together through adversity leading up to the inevitable slow motion shoot out are all present and correct. The action is well handled and it’s hard to fault technically, but there’s little here to mark it out from such an overcrowded marketplace of extremely similar Hollywood thrillers.
In fact easily the most memorable part of the film is its particularly attractive title sequence.