Classy action-dramas like The Fugitive are a tough breed to find these days on movie screens; it seems nearly insane that this film was nominated for Best Picture in 1993, not because it’s not fully awesome, but rather, this genre would NEVER be paid attention to by members of the Academy in our current cinematic climate. Harrison Ford delivered a quintessential movie star performance, eliciting sympathy right from the outset, and allowing the audience to embark on his journey with him, rather than feeling like a spectator. There’s a great supporting cast including Sela Ward, Joe Pantoliano, Jeroen Krabbe, Julianne Moore, and Andreas Katsulas. The fantastic Tommy Lee Jones of course won the Oscar for Best Supporting Actor, the film was a massive financial success, and a decent pseudo-sequel following Jones’ character was released in 1998.
The Fugitive is easily the best film that filmmaker Andrew Davis ever directed, as it was extremely well-crafted on a technical level with ace cinematography by Michael Chapman and a terrific score by James Newton Howard, while Jeb Stuart and David Twohy’s smart and logical screenplay never went too far over the top, instead playing it realistic yet exciting, and always making sure we cared deeply about Ford and his paranoid plight. Apparently, when the film was in various stages of development, Michael Douglas, Kevin Costner, Nick Nolte, and Alec Baldwin were all considered for the Dr. Kimble role, while Gene Hackman and Jon Voight were both thought of for US Marshall Gerard. The film is notable for extensive location shooting in and around the city of Chicago and in the state of North Carolina. “I didn’t kill my wife!” “I don’t care!”