With Stealth, director Rob Cohen teeters dangerously close to becoming the next Michael Bay, a filmmaker widely known for films like Bad Boys II and Armageddon that disregard comprehensible storylines and action in favor of widespread explosions and mayhem. Cohen says Stealth is his attempt to create "an intense experience in the air," like the drag racing in his The Fast and The Furious or the snowboarding-ahead-of-an-avalanche sequence in XXX.
Cohen's previous two films sparked revulsion and enthusiasm among audiences, who primarily latched on to them because of Vin Diesel's rising star power. He's not here to save the day this time. Instead we have up-and-coming hunk Josh Lucas (Sweet Home Alabama), Seventh Heaven babe Jessica Biel (Blade: Trinity), and Oscar-winner Jamie Foxx (Ray, Collateral) as the heroic fighter pilots central to the film. Alas, their combined star power isn't enough to save this poor and laughable attempt at a summer blockbuster.
The greatest flaw with Stealth—and there are many—is that it doesn't stay true to its premise. You might surmise from the trailers that this film is Top Gun meets The Ballad of John Henry as told by sci-fi author Michael Crichton. Lieutenants Gannon (Lucas), Wade (Biel), and Purcell (Foxx) are an elite team of ace fighter pilots chosen to test fly a new series of stealth fighter jets called Talons. This being the "near future," we're talking about aircraft capable of entering enemy space undetected, executing precision attacks, and then high-tailing back to base before you can say, "I have no knowledge of that mission."
The film goes great lengths to show the talent and camaraderie of this team, so naturally they're reluctant when commanding officer Captain Cummings ...1
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