The Fugitive (1993) – Movie Review

The Fugitive is a 1993 crime film directed by Andrew Davis and it stars Harrison Ford, Tommy Lee Jones, Sela Ward, Julianne Moore, Andreas Katsulas, and Jerome Krabbè. The film is about a doctor named Richard Kimble (Harrison Ford) who is falsely accused for murdering his wife as he is searching for the real killer who committed the crime. Meanwhile there’s a nationwide manhunt for Kimble being the target which is led by U.S Marshall Samuel Gerard (Tommy Lee Jones). The entire movie is basically like a cat hunting a mouse. The movie made $368.9 million dollars at the box office and it was nominated for six Academy Awards. It won an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor.

Opening Thoughts:

The Fugitive was one of those movies that I grew up watching as a kid with my family. My family seen the movie plenty of times before me and then I saw it with them together as a little kid. I love this movie so much and it’s one of my favorite films of all time. It’s one of those movies that never gets old and it just gets better with every viewing in my opinion. Outside of Star Wars, this is my favorite Harrison Ford movie. This is also my favorite Tommy Lee Jones movie and this movie is the main reason why I think Tommy Lee Jones is one of the greatest actors of all time in the Hollywood Industry. When I started to collect DVDs , I bought The Fugitive on DVD and it was one of the early movies that I collected. But when I started to collect blurays, I immediately bought The Fugitive on bluray and the quality is great! I’m hoping one day it gets a 4K release. It will be a day one purchase for me.

The Positives:

Immediately when the film starts, you are drawn to the story. The film doesn’t start slow and it goes straight to the situation. It does lead up to the situation pretty quick but it doesn’t hurt the movie. It smoothly transitions to it without any problems. You’re really invested with each of the main characters and there are so many iconic scenes in the film. The music composed by James Newton Howard is so good and it really fits with the tone of the film. Throughout the entire film it’s basically a cat chasing a mouse and you wander how the movie will end. One of my favorite scenes from the film is when Dr. Richard Kimble aims Gerard’s gun at him at a storm drain and says this:

Dr. Richard Kimble: I didn’t kill my wife!

Deputy Samuel Gerard*raising his hands*: I don’t care!

I love that scene so much because it shows the type of character Samuel Gerard is. I forgot to mention the first scene that I liked from the film and that is when Deputy Samuel Gerard begins to take the role to search for Kimble and tells them this:

Deputy Samuel Gerard: “Listen up, ladies and gentlemen. Our fugitive has been on the run for 90 minutes. Average foot speed over uneven ground, barring injuries, is 4 miles-an-hour. That gives us a radius of six miles. What I want out of each and every one of you is a hard-target search of every gas station, residence, warehouse, farmhouse, henhouse, outhouse and doghouse in that area. Checkpoints go up at fifteen miles. Your fugitive’s name is Dr. Richard Kimble. Go get him.

I love that scene so much because it shows that Samuel Gerard is more of a straight-to-the-point type of character. He’s a very simple person and he doesn’t make things complicated. He takes his job seriously and shows no emotions that will distract his objective. There are flashback scenes of the real killer killing Kimble’s wife and it is a bit disturbing for the viewer to see it but it’s necessary in the film because you get to see a glimpse of the physical appearance of the real killer.

The climax scene was executed so well. It was where Dr. Richard Kimble is inside the real killer’s house and finds a “big piece” to the mystery. He calls Deputy Gerard from the real killer’s house and says this:

Kimble: Do you remember what I told you in the tunnel? 
Gerard: I remember it was noisy. Well, I think you said something like… “you didn’t kill your wife.” 
Kimble: Remember what you told me? 
Gerard: I remember you were pointing my gun at me. 
Kimble: You said, “I don’t care.” 
Gerard: Yeah, Richard, that’s right, I don’t care. I’m not trying to solve a puzzle, here. 
Kimble: Well, I am trying to solve a puzzle. And I just found a big piece. (puts the phone down on the desk and leaves)

The scene was so clever and it definitely made the movie even more interesting. Even though the entire movie is like a cat chasing a mouse, it’s unique because the “mouse” is trying to uncover the real truth as he’s on the run.

The scenes when Kimble uncovers the entire truth about all this; it was badass to see Kimble taking on Sykes who was the real killer on the train and leaving him unconscious. The viewer understands the pain Kimble went through after losing his wife and you feel happy for him once you see Sykes is unconscious. When Kimble basically uncovers the complete truth, it was a clever plot twist! Basically a new drug named Provasic was supposed to be released but Kimble saw that it caused liver damage and the FDA would not approve it. However Kimble’s colleague and friend Dr. Nichols did not care and was in charge of the development of the drug. In order for Kimble to not get in the way, he wanted Sykes to originally kill him but it turned out to be Kimble’s wife instead that became the victim. It was a well written and executed plot twist no doubt.

The last act of the film where Kimble and Nichols are fighting as Gerard is looking for both men at the hotel rooftop was an intense one. Gerard yells out to Kimble that he knows the entire real truth as well. The dialogue went like this:

Gerard: Dr. Richard Kimble! There’s no way out of here, Richard! The entire building is locked down! Give it up Richard, you don’t have any time, Chicago police department thinks you’re a cop killer, they WILL shoot you on sight! Richard, I know you’re innocent! I know about Frederick Sykes! I know about Dr. Charles Nichols! Richard, he borrowed your car the night of your wife’s murder, he had the keys! No forced entry, Richard! He telephoned Sykes from your car, Richard! Richard, give it up! Richard, I’m either lying or I’m gonna shoot you, what do you think? Give it up, It’s time to stop running!

That line was so great in my opinion. After Gerard said that, you knew the grand finale was coming up. I just loved the way Gerard said that. When Kimble knocks Nichols unconscious from behind before he shot Gerard, Gerard and Kimble are having a face off. Howard’s music playing during their face off fitted so perfectly. It was a score that showed it was a wrap between Gerard chasing Kimble. I just loved it! I also liked when Kimble told him this:

Kimble: They killed my wife.

Gerard: I know Richard. I know.

A dialogue that was so short yet it represented so much emotions!

My favorite scene from the entire film is definitely the last couple of lines Kimble and Gerard says to one another. It went down like this:

Kimble: I thought you didn’t care.

Gerard: I don’t.

*both start to laugh*

Gerard: Don’t tell anybody, ok?

This scene was so powerful because these two went through so much during the entire film and it was great to see both becoming good friends at the end. There was no other way to end this movie other than this scene no doubt.

The chemistry between Harrison Ford and Tommy Lee Jones is so good! It’s probably one of the best cinematic acting duos in history in my opinion.

The Negatives:

I have no issues or nitpicks with this film!

The Verdict:

The Fugitive is no doubt one of the best movies ever made and it’s a true masterpiece. I actually found out recently this movie was nominated for Best Picture. This is no doubt Andrew Davis’ best film. Tommy Lee Jones won an Oscar for Best Supporting Actor and it was well deserved!

My Social Media Accounts:

As always, you can follow me on Instagram, and on Twitter. I also created a Letterboxd account, so I’ll also have the link for that as well.

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Final Thoughts:

Anyways guys, I hope you enjoyed reading my review of The Fugitive. I know I haven’t been writing reviews for a while due to work and college. But I should be getting more time to write more reviews and movie content again soon. Stay tuned for another review or movie related content!

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