U.S. Marshals is the sort of sequel that isn’t expected. Yes, The Fugitive was a brilliant film, but was definitely the sort of film that ended in a way that needed no sequel. So really, instead of a sequel, they went for a spin-off: taking the fascinating “false antagonist” Sam Gerard, who was portrayed by the usually brilliant Tommy Lee Jones. The difference in this film is that we are not following an accused murderer trying to prove his innocence, but following Sam Gerard trying to capture an accused murderer. A small difference that makes it worth a watch.
Tommy Lee Jones and his team get more air time, which allows us to get an idea of each character a bit more, almost like they were trying to set up a possible new series revolving around Gerard and his team, which could have been interesting, but was always unlikely.
Wesley Snipes is probably a more interesting fugitive as he is stronger and more capable of battling the team, as well as finding information. This is an increase on the everyday doctor of Richard Kimble, which was different. Looking at the character from a standalone role, he is a good choice, and an interesting character.
The most interesting element for me was Robert Downey Jr, when the film was released in 1998 he was in the middle of his drug and alcohol abuse, often saying in interviews after that it was one of the least enjoyable roles he had ever been involved in. This is one of the few films where his character has a negative portrayal, and yet he still does a solid enough job to help carry the film. However, at times you can also tell he wasn’t enjoying himself.
The film has some good action, some interesting portrayals and an interesting script. The film is not perfect, but is good for a relaxing watch.