In the Line of Duty: Ambush in Waco (1993) starring Tim Daly, William O'Leary, Neal McDonough, Lewis Smith, Marley Shelton, Jeri Ryan, Dan Lauria directed by Dick Lowry Movie Review

In the Line of Duty: Ambush in Waco (1993)   3/53/53/53/53/5

Tim Daly in In the Line of Duty: Ambush in Waco (1993)

Siege at Waco

Having grown tired with the settled ways of the church David Koresh (Tim Daly) joins the Davidians and recruits new members to come and live in their purpose built commune in Waco. Convinced that he is a prophet he sets about teaching the followers not just the bible but also how to use guns even if they are young children who at times receive especially hard treatment. When the ATF are tipped off over abuse and weapons in the commune it leads to a tragic siege involving the ATF and the FBI.

In the back of my mind I remember the Waco events because unlike many stores about tragedies in America this one did make the British news. Having said that whilst it means I had heard of David Koresh and knew how things played out in Waco I had no in-depth knowledge on the events of 1993. After watching "In the Line of Duty: Ambush in Waco" I don't feel like my knowledge of what happened is any deeper as this has a feel of being written with cliches and stereotypes dominating the facts.

Dan Lauria in In the Line of Duty: Ambush in Waco (1993)

The reason why I say this is because "In the Line of Duty: Ambush in Waco" suffers from a studio's over eagerness to make the movie whilst it was fresh in the public's mind and this aired in May 1993 just a month after the siege ended. The knock on effect of this is that whilst it manages to deliver a timeline of events and mention such things as the suspected abuse which leads to the ATF's initial raid which ended up in deaths it doesn't have all the details to deliver a true picture of what happened. As such it relies on those cliches and stereotypes to make it work as a movie rather than an insightful look into the events.

Now on one hand it does mean that "In the Line of Duty: Ambush in Waco" works as simple entertainment for those who enjoy dramas based on real events which don't tax the mind. But on the other it is likely to rile those who see it as a biased version of events which paints a propaganda version of things.

Whether or not you agree with how this story is portrayed one thing which will grab your attention is the performance of Tim Daly as David Koresh who has the look but also gets across an extremist attitude. It is mainly because Daly does such a decent job of playing Koresh than the faults with the other performances as actors are dealt cliche characters doesn't end up dragging it down.

What this all boils down to is that "In the Line of Duty: Ambush in Waco" is by no means perfect and suffers from being made before the details of the true story were known. But for those who enjoy simple dramas based on real events will probably find it entertaining.