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20 of 21 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A Tense, Well-Scripted Thriller Pertinent to our Times
Great literature its not, but Robert Ludlum is hard to beat as a writer of suspense thrillers and COVERT ONE: THE HADES FACTOR is no exception. Writing the screenplay with Ludlum is Elwood Reid and together they have created a very fast moving tale of the threats of bio-terrorism, found in Mick Jackson a perfect match for a director, and gathered an exciting cast to make...
Published on September 7, 2006 by Grady Harp

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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Above average production for a TV movie
A new kind of virus breaks out at three different places simultaneously, each part of the U.S. military. In Germany, Mira Sorvino is working undercover buying a vial of a virus. When her own people try to kill her, she goes underground to find out why. Stephen Dorff is an ex covert agent now working as a medical researcher. He starts out investigating the viral outbreak,...
Published on October 19, 2006 by Christopher Hivner


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20 of 21 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A Tense, Well-Scripted Thriller Pertinent to our Times, September 7, 2006
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This review is from: Robert Ludlum's Covert One: The Hades Factor (DVD)
Great literature its not, but Robert Ludlum is hard to beat as a writer of suspense thrillers and COVERT ONE: THE HADES FACTOR is no exception. Writing the screenplay with Ludlum is Elwood Reid and together they have created a very fast moving tale of the threats of bio-terrorism, found in Mick Jackson a perfect match for a director, and gathered an exciting cast to make this 160 minute made-for-television movie fly by at tremendous speed.

The premise of the film involves the worst of all 'weapons of mass destruction' - biological warfare - and here the topic is dealt with in a fascinating manner that pulls the US Government into the fold as implicated in the feasibility of such warfare. Not possible? Well, watch the film and make up your own mind.

Stephen Dorff plays Jon Smith, a one time covert agent for the White House, who becomes ensnarled in a plot to release the Hades Virus (a hemorrhagic lethal variant of the Ebola virus) to destroy the US. Smith's girlfriend Dr. Amsden (Sofia Myles) works for the government in the department that watches for measures just such as this. When the plot to sell the virus (is it possibly a virus known to the US government as the Scimitar project?) falls into the hands of an agent Rachel Russell (Mira Sorvino), the confusion of who is working for whom unfolds and all manner of agents and FBI, CIA, etc agents tumble around the President (Anjelica Huston) trying to identify the true culprits and the race to stop the dissemination of the deadly virus. In the many roles of varying consequence are actors Blair Underwood, Danny Huston, Colm Meaney, Josh Hopkins, etc.

The film is not without its gruesome elements: what depiction of bio-terrorism could avoid that? But the pace and the action sequences and the many locations of the film make the story propel along at a fascinating pace and the actors hold their own despite some predictable moments. Though this obviously is a fiction novel and a good one at that, there is a degree of truth in all fiction and any time writers and artists can help us understand possibilities, we are the better informed for it. Recommended viewing. Grady Harp, September 06
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Above average production for a TV movie, October 19, 2006
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This review is from: Robert Ludlum's Covert One: The Hades Factor (DVD)
A new kind of virus breaks out at three different places simultaneously, each part of the U.S. military. In Germany, Mira Sorvino is working undercover buying a vial of a virus. When her own people try to kill her, she goes underground to find out why. Stephen Dorff is an ex covert agent now working as a medical researcher. He starts out investigating the viral outbreak, but is eventually pulled back into black ops work to find out where the virus came from and who tried to kill Sorvino.

The Hades Factor is a good spy thriller, especially since it was made for television. It's a good looking film with an above average cast and obviously had a good sized budget. The story is interesting and the director keeps the action moving.
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10 of 13 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars An INSULT to Robert Ludlum's Work, Never Watch This, May 14, 2008
This review is from: Robert Ludlum's Covert One: The Hades Factor (DVD)
Robert Ludlum should rise from the grave to beat the snot out of everyone involved in making this piece of trash. I would have given it zero stars if I was able to. Absolutely none of the great aspects of The Hades Factor novel make it into this miniseries. The whole story of what Covert One is is completely changed, and not even remotely for the better. The characters of Klein and the President are completely changed, along with pretty much every single other character.

Ludlum was a genius of the spy thriller and suspense. About .05% of this bares any resemblance to his work. I was really hopeful for this series to hit the big screen someday. When I found out it was going to be a miniseries I was still hopeful it wood be done well on TV, but that hope was deflated when I saw this.

Why do people who make movies/TV shows based on very successful books feel that they can do it better just because? Why can't they just make a movie as the book was because the book was already a hit? I know certain things have to be adjusted for the screen. While the Bourne movies were only loosely based on Ludlum's trilogy, they were still very enjoyable. The Hades factor miniseries can say no such thing.

The acting is horrible, the direction is lame, and the story has been so bastardized that it makes me fear they might do the same to the later books in the series. Please stop ruining great books because of your massive ego Hollywood. Ludlum was better than you on his worst day ... even dead.

Go read the Covert One series (the ones written by Ludlum, not the trash written by other authors to continue his series after his death). They are the only way to truly enjoy what he has given us.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Suspenseful and exciting; Ludlum at his best, October 2, 2009
This review is from: Robert Ludlum's Covert One: The Hades Factor (DVD)
5 of 5 stars to the suspense movie, The Hades Factor. First, I should explain that I have read the book twice and seen the movie twice. Second, I am a big fan of Robert Ludlum's work. This is one of Ludlum's best efforts and I highly recommend either/both the book and the movie.

The story opens with the start of a plague. First a couple of soldiers die, then other people. Clearly easy to spread this disease and clearly it is deadly. No cure. Early the story takes on a mid-east terrorist theme and we begin to learn the disease is being spread by the terrorists. As the team at "Covert One" (a secret US government intelligence agency) ramps-up, we learn that the terrorists have a method of deployment of this airborne virus that will be very effective. The story mostly focuses on where did the original virus come from and who is causing it to be spread. There are some plot twists slowing down the investigation (like murder of some key people). While the story seems to be exclusively a bio-terrorist plot, there is a big plot twist where the terrorists are simply the agent of the people who are really behind the plot.

The movie is very long at 2h45min. I believe it was originally a for TV-mini series (two episodes). The style and approach of the movie is that of a high-end TV program rather than an epic movie approach. Lots of photography techniques you see often in TV but never in the movies. The settings, though rich in look, seem "closed-in" (more like a studio than a location). Clearly broken into chunks where commercials could be placed. Well acted, well photographed, just a bit "closed-in" compared to a made-as-a-movie movie.

A well told story with building suspense. Alot of reality in the story which is chilling to imagine this could really happen (i.e. it ain't sci-fi; it could happen). In the real world, we have seen SARS, Bird Flu and recently H1N1 Flu effecting the population; what if the disease is more deadly than these? What if it spread widely? Yes, this is an exciting, suspenseful story. This is an exciting race against time to save the world! I highly recommend it!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars At least on par with the Bourne series, May 28, 2012
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I like this genre of action/adventure/espionage, and Mira Sorvino is custom made for her role. The writing and acting were much better than I'd hoped for. I highly recommend, and was pleasantly surprised that it runs two hours and 46 minutes! I watched "Chronicle" a couple of days ago, and it was a mere 1:26.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Covert One is a Tad Long, August 9, 2007
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This review is from: Robert Ludlum's Covert One: The Hades Factor (DVD)
Just do a little editing and make it two hours or just over and you definitely have something thrilling. It may seem a little long about halfway in. Still it isn't bad at all. Robert Ludlum books usually make good movies. The acting is top notch with a good cast. I recommend it as a rental before buying. All professionally done with excellent sets and decent music. The length is the only thing that detracts a little at 180 minutes. If you split it into a couple viewings you may enjoy it more. A little bloody for young children, but decent for most the family.

A deadly virus like the Ebola is being spread throughout the US. A covert agent must find a missing agent that may have gone rogue and determine who is spreading the virus and where they plan to hit next. A group of terrorist is trying to prevent the rogue agent and him from surviving to tell their discovery of the history of the virus. I recommend this movie. If you enjoy this be sure to catch "Outbreak" and "Chill Factor".
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars pretty good soy thriller, September 21, 2012
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The acting was average, the dialog was cheesy at times, and the story was ok. All that gets it a watchable 3 stars.
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3.0 out of 5 stars The Ultimate Movie Review! - (...) - @tss5078, July 27, 2014
By 
Todd Smith (East Rockaway, NY United States) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Robert Ludlum's Covert One: The Hades Factor (DVD)
Based on a series of successful novels, CBS decided to turn the Covert One series into a mini-series, and while they got some big names to be in this three hour epic, the story just doesn't transfer well to film. Not every story can be condensed down and still keep the story believable and that's what happens here. Things move so quickly with one twist coming right on top another, making the film unbelievably confusing. The story begins on an army base, when a strange virus, thought to have been destroyed in the Middle East, starts killing people. The FBI, CIA, and mysterious group Covert One investigate and try to stop what they see as a terrorist attack. As I said there are so many different elements involved in this story and while a well placed twist in the story can help a film, too many just confuse things. Half way through this film it was impossible to tell who was working for whom, and what different groups were actually trying to accomplish. Stephen Dorff, AKA Mr. Blue E-Cig, stars and while he's not really known as an action guy, does a really good job. He's paired with Mira Sorvino who is one of my least favorite actresses. There is no doubting the fact that she's beautiful and somehow won an Academy Award, but I've always found her to be unbelievable and far to cold to play most of the roles she's been in. There are also some nice cameos from some people I haven't seen in a while, which could have been a big help to the film, if they weren't also part of the constant twists and turns of the story. I don't know how the novels were, but as far as the film goes, The Hades Factory is extremely fast paced and far too confusing to be worth watching. They had three hours to really engage and entrench the audience in the story, instead they blindfold you and put you on a roller coaster. The story is all over the place, the performances are mixed, and in the end, you'll just be scratching your head.
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4.0 out of 5 stars TV Espionage drama, September 16, 2014
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This review is from: Robert Ludlum's Covert One: The Hades Factor (DVD)
This 2006 espionage drama pushes the boundaries of what can be shown on network TV. It is considerably more gripping and threatening than most TV miniseries. The plot, which involves a bio-terrorist attack on the United States -- is rather convoluted, and requires suspension of disbelief in places, but definitely holds the viewer's attention. The acting is quite good. The locations, which range from major European cities to Washington DC, add an element of authenticity. The fast-paced direction and visually stark sets - industrial parks, abandoned warehouses, desert guerilla camps and winter cityscapes - give this drama a consistently dark, menacing ambience.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Nailbiter "Factor", April 7, 2011
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Kenneth C. Goslin (North Bend, OR USA) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Robert Ludlum's Covert One: The Hades Factor (DVD)
This was way more intense than I thought it would be. GREAT SUSPENSE!!! I've already watched it several times. EXCELLENT story line.
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Robert Ludlum's Covert One: The Hades Factor
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