Jean Claude-Van Damme and co-star Natasha Henstridge
Director Ringo Lam on Maximum Risk
"I had been wanting to make a Hollywood picture for a long time and so, when
the chance came, I took the challenge and started working on it. I started
meeting the producer, he gave me the script and I read it and found it quite
interesting. Then I worked together with him on the script and finally the
studio gave us the green light and we started shooting it. It was a good
My views on Maximum Risk
Maximum Risk is Ringo Lam first and so far,only Hollywood film. Lam said in
an interview that he signed a one-picture deal with Columbia Pictures and has
no intentions to work in Hollywood full-time unlike fellow director
Thus,it's pretty difficult to predict when will Ringo Lam make another
Hollywood picture plus the fact Maximum Risk did pretty bad in the box-office.
Maximum Risk is said to be Jean Claude-Van Damme first film which he shares
the top billing with a female co-star but bringing a female lead in really
didn't help especially when the female actress turn out to be Natasha Henstridge.
Natasha who considers taking off her clothes as acting has acting abilities
that could rival Van Damme. Coupled with the fact that none of the other
supporting actors (including Paul Ben-Victor who seems to have a reputation
for playing slimeballs like he did again in The Corruptor)
could do any better and you got one of Ringo Lam's worst
film to date. Maybe this is just the producers' plans of hiding Van Damme's
bad acting, by surrounding him with even worst actor.
Besides the bad acting, Maximum Risk also suffers in the plot department.
Maximum Risk tries to be different from the rest of Van Damme films by
having an "intelligent plot".
Sticking Van Damme in a straight-laced action flick works but try putting
him in a plot as complex as Maximum Risk and the result is disaster.
I could forgive this bad movie if it has impressive non-stop action sequences
like in Full Contact
but it didn't.
Fortunately,the action set-pieces, though far and few are still pretty
I remember watching this film at the cinemas and feeling sorry for director
Ringo Lam. A brilliant film-maker like Ringo Lam deserves to work on
something so much better than this, which he did in the following year
with his Hong Kong classic,
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