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Desperate Measures (1998)
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Review Date: August 24, 1998
Director: Barbet Schroeder
Writer: David Klass
Producers: Barbet Schroeder, Lee Rich, Susan Hoffman, Gary Foster
Actors:
Michael Keaton
Andy Garcia
Plot:
A feisty police officer's nine-year old son has fallen gravely ill and needs a bone marrow transplant in order to survive. The only donor compatible to the child is Peter McCabe (Keaton), multiple murderer locked up in jail. Agent Conner (Garcia) convinces Peter to redeem himself by helping his son live longer. McCabe agrees. Once in the hospital, McCabe escapes, and mayhem ensues. Ironically, detective Conner must catch the fugitive, but not kill him, for his son's life hangs in the balance.
Critique:
Rudimentary thriller containing some suspenseful moments, many implausibilities, a standard car chase, a solid performance by Keaton as the highly enlightened killer, and a cool final scene. This movie is not extremely original in any way, shape or form, but it does offer an interesting launch premise, a relatively short run-time, and an even pace of suspense and interest throughout. Michael Keaton's performance is also very over-the-top and fun to watch, and of course, the proverbial Andy Garcia playing "the suit" (I may be mistaken, but I think Andy's last seven films have him garbed in a suit. Perhaps even the same suit! Stretch your acting muscles, Andy! Loosen the tie, dude!!). Schroeder does not bring anything overtly stylish to the film, but does maintain a non-stop pace of twists, turns and action scenes.

The film could've used a stronger "reality check" (Garcia asks other police officers not to shoot Keaton's character in order to maintain his son's chances of living, while sacrificing the lives of other officers in the process.), as Garcia's character seems to break every law in the book by the end of the film (Why couldn't you just shoot the guy in the legs to slow him down? Just a thought). Overall, this film would not be a highly recommendable one by any stretch of the imagination, but I guess it was some fun for what it was, and it sure wouldn't hurt if you crashed out after a long day's work, and needed something to join your brain in shut-down mode for an hour or so. Keaton's performance is also enjoyable to watch, as is the "suit's". Also, the final scene of this movie is one of the coolest that I've seen in a while, so I guess you could always look forward to that little tidbit of hipness. Otherwise, this film is like a wet fart on a hot day. Satisfying as it goes along, but ultimately empty and forgettable when it's over.
(c) 2017 Berge Garabedian
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