March 8, 1998 -- "U.S. Marshals" is a nimble and intricate sequel to "The Fugitive" with good performances and a good plot. It is almost as good as the original, but not quite.
Tommy Lee Jones is back as the big dog, Chief Deputy Marshal Samuel Gerard, while Harrison Ford's place is taken by Wesley Snipes, who desperately needed a hit after last year's disastrous "One Night Stand."
Robert Downey Jr. turns in a fine performance as John Royce, another agent assigned to hunt down Snipes, who plays Sheridan, a spy who is being chased by more than one government. There are all kinds of double-dealings and government conspiracies in this rich-textured story.
The heart of the story, however, as in the first film, is Tommy Lee Jones. He is so good at playing smart, wise-cracking characters, and his characters always have a sharp edge to them. He is fun to watch. Sheridan is a worthy opponent for Gerard in this film, and Gerard's team of deputies is also very sharp. Unlike many films of this type, you actually get some feeling for detective work in this movie.
The story, by John Pogue, kept me guessing for about three-quarters of the way through the film and the direction by Stuart Baird kept things moving. There were a number of close escapes, some of them downright ridiculous, but except for a few scenes, this film was a lot of fun. It rates a B.
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