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The Hospital (1971)

Approved  |   |  Comedy, Drama, Mystery  |  16 June 1972 (Ireland)
7.3
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Ratings: 7.3/10 from 3,805 users  
Reviews: 63 user | 11 critic

Horror/mystery in which an over-burdened doctor struggles to find meaning in his life while a murderer stalks the halls of his hospital.

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Title: The Hospital (1971)

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Won 1 Oscar. Another 6 wins & 5 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Dr. Herbert Bock
...
Barbara Drummond
...
Drummond
...
Dr. Welbeck (as Richard A. Dysart)
Stephen Elliott ...
Dr. Sundstrom
...
Milton Mead
Andrew Duncan ...
William Mead
...
Mrs. Christie
Jordan Charney ...
Hitchcock
...
Guernsey
Lenny Baker ...
Dr. Schaefer
Richard Hamilton ...
Dr. Ronald Casey
Arthur Junaluska ...
Mr. Blacktree
Kate Harrington ...
Nurse Dunne
...
Marilyn Mead
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Storyline

Herbert Bock is chief of medicine in a major teaching hospital. His wife has left him, he is impotent and his children have both disowned him. He is toying with the idea of suicide when patients begin dying, not from complications, but from the erroneous treatments the Hospital is giving them. People in the wrong beds are given wrong medicines, sent to operating theaters for incorrect surgery, and found in waiting rooms dead of natural causes. Barbara Drummond has come to take her comatose father back to the Sioux reservation where he operates a clinic and they each reach out to each other for emotional support, as a shadowy figure stalks the patients and staff of the hospital. Written by John Vogel <jlvogel@comcast.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Behind the lab coat beats the heart of a man who's been pushed to the edge. See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Drama | Mystery

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

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Release Date:

16 June 1972 (Ireland)  »

Also Known As:

Right Smack Into the Wind  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
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Technical Specs

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Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The movie became a benchmark template for black comedies examining other institutions such as Network (1976) (the media) and Teachers (1984) (education), the first also being written by this movie's writer Paddy Chayefsky and the latter also being directed by this film's director Arthur Hiller. See more »

Goofs

In the Emergency Room, the dead patient's eyes and head change positions between the time Mrs. Cushing and Dr. Spezio look at him. See more »

Quotes

Barbara: It's hard for me to take your despair very seriously, Doctor. You obviously enjoy it so much.
See more »

Crazy Credits

Although Barnard Hughes played two distinct roles, the end credits lists Hughes as playing the role of Drummond but not Dr. Mallory. See more »

Connections

Referenced in A Decade Under the Influence (2003) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Taking Your Life In Your Hands
19 June 2007 | by (Buffalo, New York) – See all my reviews

Anybody who goes to the Manhattan Hospital Center is taking his life in his hands. That includes the staff of The Hospital.

I had never seen The Hospital before and I was intrigued at how similar the characters and situations of the plot were to that other Paddy Chayefsky masterpiece, Network. There are elements in George C. Scott's character that have both Al Schumacher's and Howard Beale's.

He's the administrator of The Hospital and he's mad as hell and not going to take it any more. He's completely estranged from his wife and kids. It takes a Faye Dunaway type character in the person of Diana Rigg to make him snap out of it. One roll in the hay with her and he's shocked back to reality and the fact he still can contribute in the world.

But first he's got a real problem. Someone is out killing hospital staff, four of them in a 48 hour period. And the nice part is their deaths can be attributed to in large part to the general incompetence of a medical bureaucracy. That's where the comedy comes in.

There is an actual Howard Beale type character in the person of Barnard Hughes, Diana Rigg's father. His end is not quite as dramatic as Beale's though.

Back in my working days it was part of my job to pay medical suppliers. Some of them could be as big creeps as you'll find portrayed in The Hospital. The black comedy satire had some real bite to it for me.

George C. Scott was nominated for Best Actor, but having won and refused to accept the previous year's Oscar for Patton, he wasn't about to get a second chance. He lost to Gene Hackman for The French Connection. Still his handling of the role is unforgettable.

Try viewing The Hospital back to back with Network and see how many similarities you spot.


7 of 7 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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