Race Against Time
TNT premieres the futuristic action thriller “Race Against Time,” Sunday, 7/23/00 at 8:00PM ET/PT. In an attempt to save his dying son, Jim Gabriel (Eric Roberts) makes a deadly pact with the powerful organ-harvesting organization Lifecorps: They provide him with the money to pay his son’s skyrocketing medical bills, and at the end of one year they come and collect Gabriel’s body. Tragically, before the ink is even dry on the contract, Gabriel discovers Lifecorps has deceived him by concealing news of his son’s death. Unable to break his contract, our hero is on the run from Lifecorps, its merciless leader Dr. Anton Stofeles (Chris Sarandon) and his henchman Burke (Cary Elwes), a vicious tracker. Gabriel’s luck changes when he saves the life of a beautiful but tough bounty hunter named Alex (Sarah Wynter). He then finds another ally in Helen Steele (Diane Venora), a rising star in the corporation who doesn’t agree with the doctor’s win-at-any-cost philosophy.
Several credibility gaps diminish what could have been an intriguing action thriller. For example: The good guys crash a barricaded building by smashing an SUV through a window. After the guards blast it with machine gun fire, they open the doors, only to discover that the vehicle is empty. The screenplay never explains how they got out. And there is no way they could have jumped out without being noticed. I guess the producers figure we are just too stupid to question it. And that’s just one example. Another problem is the overwhelming amount of violence this film contains. With elements of “Logan’s Run” and “The Running Man,” plus an engaging performance by Mr. Roberts, this was on its way to being an entertaining film. Alas, it becomes little more than a violent, implausible depiction of a bleak future, where lawbreakers save the world.