Story: In his small Georgia town, Sheriff Watts (Bruce Willis) is used to peace and quiet, which is why he chose the locale for these years of his career, as he closes in on retirement. But that peace and quiet is about to shattered, as a local man has been taken prison in his own home and things seem to be on the edge of escalated violence. The central figure in this hostage situation is Rutledge (Timothy V. Murphy), a criminal who is involved in countless not so legal enterprises, but also someone connected enough to avoid being held accountable. He and his crew of yokels have taken a local pharmacist prison and while outsiders might not know why such lengths were gone to, Rutledge chose the hostage because they have information on a serious crime he was involved with. Can Watts fend off Rutledge and his goons, or will he get away with murder yet again?

Entertainment Value: A lot of Bruce Willis’ direct to video output is on the awful side, but American Siege has to be one of the bottom dwellers, even in that roster. The story follows a basic premise similar to many of the Willisverse flicks, with Bruce at some rural, isolated house as part of a showdown, like this is the chosen narrative for about half of his direct to video movies. But some manage to spice up the film with some decent action scenes or over the top dialogue, while American Siege wallows in boredom. The pace is glacial enough to sink this ship, as so little happens and it happens so rarely, its like the writers fell asleep during long stretches here. Even when the guns come out and the action dials up, there is not much to get excited about. Mediocre, half hearted action scenes play out and that’s an avoidable issue, as even bad writers could weave some minor action thrills, I’d think. Instead, we get dull sequence after dull sequence, making this an absolute chore to sit through. I can’t recommend American Siege to anyone, even Bruce’s most devoted fans.

As with all of the Willisverse entries, the main appeal of American Siege is to see Bruce and this is not one that delivers much on that front. Despite prominent placement on the marketing and a central role in the narrative, Willis doesn’t have much screen time. He pops up just enough to serve his purpose in the story, or what little story there is here. When he is around, he performs about as expected, given his condition and the awful script. He is pretty monotone and distracted in American Siege, so perhaps the lessened screen time was wise in this case. Despite the issues he was dealing with in this period, Willis does often spark up a little in these movies and those moments are great as a fan, but sadly, no such sparkles of Bruce magic here. Timothy V. Murphy has the true lead and he is a forgettable, ineffective villain that stumbles at every turn. Murphy could have stolen the show and made the movie his, but instead he turns in a dull, basic effort that doesn’t stand out whatsoever. The cast also includes Janet Jones, Johnny Messner, and Rob Gough.

Use this Amazon link to check out American Siege and help support my site!