Made in 1994 True Lies is an American action-comedy film directed by James Cameron and starring Arnold Schwarzenegger, Jamie Lee Curtis, Tom Arnold, Bill Paxton and Tia Carrere, with a young Eliza Dushku appearing in the film in one of her first major film roles.
Plot and Cast of True Lies
Harry Tasker (Schwarzenegger) has a boring life with a boring job, he works for an insurance company which involves him being away a lot but he provides for his wife Helen (Curtis) and his daughter Dana (Dushku). What they don’t know is that Harry is actually leading a double life and is a spy working for a counter-terrorism organisation known as The Omega Sector. Unfortunately due to his job Harry is forced to spend the majority of his time away from his wife and daughter leading them both to feel neglected.
After a mission in Switzerland Harry discovers a plot to smuggle nuclear weapons into the United States, however, at the same time Harry also uncovers evidence to suggest that his wife may be having an affair.
During his investigation he discovers that his wife is bored with her life, and longs to have an adventure of her own. Deciding to give her what she wants (and unbeknown to her that it is him) Harry recruits her for a false mission just to give her some excitement. Unfortunately during the bogus mission Harry and Helen are captured by terrorists and Harry’s double life finally comes out as Helen discovers who her husband truly is.
Arnold Schwarzenegger at his Best
In 1994 Schwarzenegger was still in his prime and again teamed up with James Cameron (the two having worked together on The Terminator in 1984 and again with Terminator 2: Judgement Day in 1991). Consequently the film has a lead actor and a director who know how to work together and get the best from one another. The supporting actors are also brilliantly cast, with Curtis playing Harry’s bored wife expertly, however, it is Bill Paxton who steals his scenes with his portrayal of fake-spy “Simon” who is just trying to get Helen into bed.
International terrorism is always a classic means of delivering plenty of explosions with well choreographed action sequences and True Lies is no exception. Indeed during the 1990s audiences were hungry for action films and stars Schwarzenegger and Sylvester Stallone found themselves quickly becoming international action stars.
There are those who have described True Lies as an almost lost Bond movie because during the 1990s there was a bit of an empty patch for 007, which began in 1989 when Timothy Dalton played the charatcer for the second and final time, which went to 1995 when Pierce Brosnan took over the role. Whether the audience will put the film in that category is up to them, still, it cannot be denied that Tasker is clearly a super-spy easily on par with the British 007 and would probably give the smoothest spy in Britain a run for his money if the two ever found themselves on opposite sides.
Art Malik is suitably menacing as Salim Abu Aziz AKA “The Sand Spider” with Tia Carrere as his sexy assistant who is clearly more than a little interested in Harry. Put everything together and the audience have a great story, loads of things blowing up, terrorists, Arnie flying a Harrier, and Curtis coming out of her quiet-life shell to help her husband save the world (using the world there as a euphemism for the United States) from international terrorists – basically what more could action fans want?