Chain Reaction is the 1996 flick from The Fugitive director Andrew Davis. The movie stars Keanu Reeves as a lowly college student that stumbles upon the key to making low-cost, pollution free energy from water. Some of the project's team members want to share the discovery with the world, providing the answer to clean, affordable electricity to every nation, while others, such as Morgan Freeman's character, feel the technology should stay in the hands of the United States. Later that night, a deadly explosion rocks the lab, killing the team members that were trying to share the technology. Reeve's character, Eddie, along with Lily Sinclair (played by Rachel Weisz) are framed for the explosion, and rather than turning themselves in, they decide to run. The rest of the movie is little more than disjointed chase sequences, broken up only by the pompous ramblings of the people that are behind the explosion.
If this movie only had Keanu Reeves in it, I wouldn't have been surprised at how bad it was. He doesn't ruin every movie he has been in, but it has been proven he can't rescue a movie with a flawed premise - like Chain Reaction. It really boggles the mind that good actors like Rachel Weisz and Morgan Freeman chose to be a part of this movie, and even more surprising that they brought absolutely nothing to the table. None of the characters are particularly likeable, nothing happens that we've not seen before, and you can see the ending coming about 30 minutes into the flick. The entire movie is a mess that's not worth your time.
Trivia: Dustin Hoffman was originally supposed to play the role of Lyman Collier, but it was played by Brian Cox instead. Looks like Hoffman knew better than to stay on board this train wreck.
12/2/2005 Aaron Thomas