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16 of 17 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Crowe steals the show
Russell Crowe is fantastic and steals the spotlight away from Denzel Washington who also does a fine job in this futuristic movie.
I will be the first to admit that the storyline is not the greatest but the entertainment value is excellent. Russell Crowe (Sid 6.7) is a computer generated bad guy who needs all the attention that he can find. The only man for the job...
Published on January 20, 2001 by Mike T.

versus
39 of 43 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Clear demonstration of where star power can carry a movie
"Virtuosity" is by no means a great movie. Simply put, it is a typical late-summer, action-thriller, popcorn flick. But, it's a case where the performance of the lead actors transcends the quality of the story. The story itself involves a cop named Parker Barnes who has fallen on hard times after being unable to stop his wife and daughter from being murdered and...
Published on June 7, 2002 by Patrick L. Randall


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39 of 43 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Clear demonstration of where star power can carry a movie, June 7, 2002
By 
This review is from: Virtuosity (DVD)
"Virtuosity" is by no means a great movie. Simply put, it is a typical late-summer, action-thriller, popcorn flick. But, it's a case where the performance of the lead actors transcends the quality of the story. The story itself involves a cop named Parker Barnes who has fallen on hard times after being unable to stop his wife and daughter from being murdered and accidentally killing innocent civilians in pursuit of the man who committed the crime. His attempt at redemption comes at the hands a computer program that is the composite of profiles of several hundred serial killers and mass criminals (including the one who murdered Barnes' family) called Syd 6.7. Syd 6.7 somehow managed to break free of his computer-generated environment and is wrecking havoc on the general populace. Only Barnes seems to have the ability to defeat him. It's an interesting premise, but its execution is pedestrian at best. What keeps the movie afloat is the perfomances of Denzel Washington as Barnes and Russell Crowe as Syd 6.7. Washington effectively portrays Barnes as a man who's struggling with the demons of his failure years earlier and who wants desperately to defeat Syd as a kind of salvation for himself. Crowe, who was a relative unknown at this point, plays Syd with as a bit of an over-the-top psychopath (which is to be expected given the characters psychological makeup), but also manages to do so with a bit of wit and charm that makes Syd seem like an almost likeable anti-hero.
Denzel Washington's credentials as one of the best actors in the business were well known prior to the making of "Virtuosity". He had won an Best Support Actor Oscar for "Glory" and should have won the Best Actor Oscar for "Malcolm X". His known strengths allowed him to transcend less-than-stellar material to make this movie enjoyable. Afterwards, he went on to memorable roles in "Courage Under Fire" (for which he should have been nominated for an Oscar, but wasn't), "The Hurricane" (for which he should have WON the Oscar, but didn't), and "Training Day" (where he finally got his due with a Best Actor Oscar, ironically by defeating Russell Crowe).
Russell Crowe was practically unknown the public's eye at the time of this movie. He had made a memorable impression as a Neo-Nazi skinhead in "Romper Stomper", but few had seen this flick. His handling of the Syd 6.7 character demonstrated an acting ability that hinted at the promise of a long movie career. He subsequently followed "Virtuosity" with his first truly star-making role as tough-as-nails cop Bud White in "L.A. Confidential". His acting range continued to show itself in roles such as corporate whistle-blower, Jeffrey Wigand, in "The Insider", and as Roman warrior, Maximus, in the Oscar-winner "Gladiator" (for which Crowe, himself, won a Best Actor Oscar).
While nothing more than summertime confection, "Virtuosity" is a fun watch if for no other reason than you get to see two of the best actors around perform their craft well together to help a mediocre movie become a entertaining one.
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16 of 17 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Crowe steals the show, January 20, 2001
By 
Mike T. (Rockford, IL) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Virtuosity (DVD)
Russell Crowe is fantastic and steals the spotlight away from Denzel Washington who also does a fine job in this futuristic movie.
I will be the first to admit that the storyline is not the greatest but the entertainment value is excellent. Russell Crowe (Sid 6.7) is a computer generated bad guy who needs all the attention that he can find. The only man for the job is Denzel Washington who is sent on a mission to find and destroy Sid 6.7. That is a tough problem because Sid can rebuild himself similiar to the Terminator.
The more attention that Sid receives the more outrageous he becomes. Kelly Lynch also stars as Denzels partner.
DVD sound and picture is very good.
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13 of 15 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Better than most of the 1995 crop of cyber-spam, August 11, 1999
By A Customer
This review is from: Virtuosity (DVD)
Virtuosity isn't a brilliant movie, but it is at least somewhat innovative and entertaining from end to end. More than can be said for similar fare like "Hackers" or "The Net." Denzel Washington, as always, is a very good actor, and Kelly Lynch is competent if flaky, but the movie is stolen by Russell Crowe's psychotic performance as Sid 6.7. His antics make Virtuosity worth watching, especially the Saturday Night Fever reference.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Sid is the Reason to See This Movie, May 17, 2001
By A Customer
This review is from: Virtuosity [VHS] (VHS Tape)
I just saw the movie largely becuase I had heard that Russell Crowe was brilliant in it and I was definitely not disappointed. He is brilliant and more. He is vicious and loving every minute of it. He has a killer sense of humor and a panther's grace. The plot is entirely average and Denzel Washington did not have enough to do. The only reason to see it, is to see yet another face of Russell Crowe performced beautifully.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Virtuosity, January 26, 2010
This review is from: Virtuosity (DVD)
The Law Enforcement Technology Advancement Centre (LETAC) has developed SID version 6.7: a Sadistic, Intelligent, and Dangerous virtual reality entity which is synthesized from the personalities of more than 150 serial killers. LETAC would like to train police officers by putting them in VR with SID, but they must prove the concept by using prisoners as test subjects. One such prisoner is ex-cop Parker Barnes. When SID manages to inject his personality into a nano-machine android, it appears that Barnes might be the only one who can stop him. This movie is worthwhile and intriguing, the marvelous special effects enhance the look and feel of the movie. Russell Crowe is positively gleeful in his portrayal of the ultimately designed killing machine. The movie is entertaining.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An excellent choice..., July 1, 2000
By 
^margs^ (Philippines) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Virtuosity [VHS] (VHS Tape)
If you want to see a good movie, rent Virtuosity. Not only does it have a good story, but the acting is outstanding. Russel Crowe's performance outdid Denzel washington's (who is a very good actor) by alot. For all Russel Crowe fans: this is a movie to rent. For all good movie fans: rent this movie. For all none Russel Crowe fans: after watching this movie you will be one.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Overdone Premise, But Great Acting From the Two Leads, May 25, 2002
This review is from: Virtuosity (DVD)
2001's Academy Award Winner for Best Actor, Denzel Washington really picks up his heels in pursuit of his predecessor in receiving that honor in his role as a futuristic cop out to avenge the murders of his wife and daughter at the hands of a computer-generated serial killer.
As Parker Barnes, a cop who has also done jail time for unintentional killings in the line of duty, Washington's sloe-eyed intensity is plausible as he convinces the authorities to let him redeem himself by catching the demented and demonic Sid 6.7. The camera treats him with a lot of reverence and sympathy in the scene where he is stripped of his clothes and dignity while on his way to get a computerized implant during incarceration, and while flashing back to the deaths of his family. His tatooed body is somehow, a rather pityable sight.
But bad boys in the movies have more fun, and when Russell Crowe's lead villian hatches into his current and more evil incarnation, he gives a full revelation of his heavy-set triangular frame, dancing about his creator's laboratory in a gracefully choreographed ritual just before mutilating himself to test his ability to regenerate. Much of the time, he speaks in halting, brief sentances, and has an appropriate coldness, as do his normally more expressive pale aquamarine eyes. One did have to agree with the self-analysis made upon seeing himself in the screen in the discoteque. He was beautiful, and he even looked much better in the purple suit he stole than the victim from whom he took it.Occassionally, he fails to keep a straight face while taunting his victims, especially in the discoteque.
When the two leads interact, it's hard to focus on anything or anyone else. The horror of Sid's crimes can be overshadowed by his taunting of Barnes, especially during the chase scenes, during which both come across as two naughty children who need to sit down, be quiet, and take their Ritalin. Washington's marked determination in the face of Crowe's taunting adds to this effect.But it also reveals the two actors'apparent real-life amusement with each other, and a lot about Crowe's prankish nature.
Kelly Lynch rendered an assertive performance as Madison, Barnes'partner. Intelligent young Kayley Cuoco was well cast as Lynch's daughter, the last of Sid's victims.
Louise Fletcher had the other outstanding female lead as the commissioner.
As they close in on Sid, his taunting becomes more annoying than outright infuriating. Crowe breaks into that wry, Cupid's-Bow-Mouthed smile of his, which while attractive, is so smug and arrogant we feel glad that Denzel gives him few good smacks at some point before the story comes to its conclusion.But it wasn't a dull chase, and we feel glad that in the virtual world, a cop is given some opportunity to correct a few past mistakes and bring down a killer. The line between the virtual and real worlds becomes blurred. But ultimately, this ode to the hazards of modern technology gone amuck(and the icky blue slime that purportedly comes with the territory) makes us glad that to the best of anyone's knowledge,computerized monsters like Sid aren't that big a problem, as we have enough flesh-and-blood ones to deal with in real life.
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6 of 8 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Predictable with some interesting twists, September 27, 2000
By 
atmj (Rochester, NY USA) - See all my reviews
(TOP 1000 REVIEWER)    (VINE VOICE)   
This review is from: Virtuosity (DVD)
The movies premise is that Virtual reality is used to train cops in the future, but the bugs aren't out yet.
A programmer in his attempt to provide bad guys for the cops to catch, creates a super bad guy to train the cops. This super bad guy, somehow has the ability to exceed his programming and then the brilliant programmer (under this bad guy's influence) decides it would be a great idea to make him "real". Real meaning embodied in the read world via nano-technology.
Denzel Washington is a jailed cop that has been done wrong via the system. Of course he is the convict that volunteers to try out these VR programs and when this super bad guy gets out, he's the one they call.
Russell Crowe is magnificent as the oozing bad guy, he has the face and the body language that can inspire your dislike. A younger Kevin Spacey in that sense.
The violence in this movie though it is not the blood and guts of other movies, was upsetting. Of course I have a weak stomach, but maybe it was the suddeness or "realness" of it.
At the end, the good guy gets the bad guy, but in a cool way.
It wasn't a bad movie, the premise was okay. You can see the "Robocop" influence where an industry centered around using technology to provide law enforcement is sometimes society's worst enemy. Not so much because the concept is bad, but the human aspect of misusing that concept is so likely.
Denzel Washington does a decent job as the good guy, though this role does not stretch him at all. It was an okay movie, I would not watch it twice though.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars AI gone ballistic, February 16, 2008
By 
Margret A. Williams (Sparks, Nevada United States) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Virtuosity (DVD)
This is a replacement for the VHS tape I had. I love this movie. It has two of my favorite actors in it (Denzel and Russell). I love to watch this movie because it makes me think of the future and how computers and machines could ruin our lives.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Good, July 7, 2013
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Virtuosity (DVD)
It's been a while since I seen this movie on television and glad it's on dvd. I love this movie with all the action and russell crowe and denzel washington how could you go wrong and not love it.
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Virtuosity
Virtuosity by Brett Leonard (DVD - 1999)
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