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24: Redemption (DVD Review)

23 Nov, 2008 By: John Latchem

Street 11/25/08
$26.98 DVD
Not rated
Stars Kiefer Sutherland, Cherry Jones, Robert Carlyle, Gil Bellows, Tony Todd, Jon Voight, Powers Boothe.

The show “24” hasn’t been seen on TV since mid-2007, when a lackluster sixth season wrapped. The show’s scheduled return in early 2008 was interrupted by the writers strike, and the Fox network decided to delay season seven to 2009. To fill the void (somewhat), the show’s producers put together this TV movie to set up some of the new storylines.

The movie presents two parallel storylines, keeping the show’s gimmick of presenting the plot in real time.

The main plot, which drives the action scenes, involves Jack Bauer (Sutherland) in exile following years of fighting terrorism for an ungrateful government. He’s living in the fictional African country of Sangala, helping a former special-forces colleague (Carlyle) run a school. When the children are targeted by a military coup, Jack must lead them to the safety of the U.S. embassy, where an ambassador is waiting to serve Jack with a congressional subpoena and drag him back to the United States.

Meanwhile, Washington, D.C., is preparing for the inauguration of America’s first female president (Jones), who must work with the outgoing president (Boothe) to decide how to help Sangala’s legitimate government. The new president’s family also is involved in some intrigue related to funding of the coup by a rogue businessman, played by Voight.

The political scenes provide some of the best moments of the movie, especially the early moments depicting the transition of power, played with subtle tension by Boothe and Jones. The inclusion of some of these scenes is especially timely considering the recent historic significance of actual presidential politics.

Ultimately some of the plots are resolved, but the bulk of the movie serves as filler to set up the new season, slated to begin in January.

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