‘The Sentinel’


Brought low by its premise (rogue Secret Service agent conspires with ex-KGB types to kill the president) and rendered idiotic by its subplot (steamy first lady sneaks off to illicit trysts at the Mayflower Hotel), this alleged political thriller spells momentary doom for star Michael Douglas. George Nolfi’s screenplay, derived from a Gerald Petievich potboiler, has more holes than Bush’s war plan and employs less fluent English. By the time this dramatic catastrophe staggers into the G8 Summit in Toronto, where wrongly accused veteran agent Pete Garrison (Douglas) must stop the attempt on the life of President Ballentine (David Rasche), you might find yourself rooting for the terrorists. Kiefer Sutherland co-stars as a dogged agency investigator, Kim Basinger’s the wayward Mrs. Ballentine, and Eva Longoria decorates the movie’s fringes as a Secret Service rookie. The lone moment of truth? Upon learning of the assassination plot, Douglas’s embattled hero remarks: “I find this pretty far-fetched.” Enough said.