Plastic surgeon Larry Roberts performs a series of minor alterations on a group of models who are seeking perfection. The operations are a resounding success. But when someone starts ... See full summary »
In the near future, a police officer specializes in malfunctioning robots. When a robot turns out to have been programmed to kill, he begins to uncover a homicidal plot to create killer robots... and his son becomes a target.
Hoping to cure his violent seizures, a man agrees to a series of experimental microcomputers inserted into his brain but inadvertently discovers that violence now triggers a pleasurable response his brain.
A young doctor at a hospital, Susan Wheeler (played by Geneviève Bujold), starts noticing a pattern of strange occurrences with patients. Healthy patients are suddenly developing complications and ending up in comas. She starts investigating and what she reveals is astonishing. Written by
When Mark puts Dr. Wheeler to bed after the chase at the Anatomy Lab, the bed covers change between when she lays down and when she leaves moments later. See more »
Okay, Mrs. Greenly, it's time to wake up. Okay, Nancy? Mrs. Greenly? Wake up. Nance, can you give me a cough, please? Nancy?
[checks her eyes]
Oh, Jesus Christ! Her pupils are fixed and dilated.
The pupils. They're fixed. Dilated.
Oh, my God!
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Douglas and Widmark add juice to this quasi-thriller trashy high budget flick
A totally pop culture fun ride, which is zero surprise because it was not only based on an airport novel by Michael Crichton, but directed by him as well.
Which means it's fast, filled with twists, and populated with easy to grasp characters. The hero is a heroine, a doctor at a major Boston hospital. The actress is French Canadian Genevieve Bujold, a slight but strong character, one of the first of the admirable women leads in movies in the New Hollywood and feminist aftermath (thankfully). In truth, she is admirable if sometimes stubbornly solitary in her pursuit of the evil she has uncovered at work.
And that evil is a series of unexpected comas in young patients, including her best friend (who has gone in for an abortion in this Roe v. Wade era, under the guise of a less politically loaded procedure). This leads to more sensational aspects that I leave to you to uncover.
By her side, either for her or against her (you can't tell after awhile) are two huge Hollywood names, an aging Richard Widmark as the head of the hospital and a young Michael Douglas as another up and coming surgeon (and Bujold's lover). The politics as well as the medical ethics get increasingly mixed up in sensational trashy novel style, which is exactly what this kind of movie needs. It's fun, quasi-realistic, interestingly speculative, and overall well made.
Yes, well made and well directed. Crichton pulls of his second full Hollywood production off with conviction. It feels like a routine, well made, Hollywood movie from 1978--it would have been terrific at a good drive-in, and it's great at home, too. Just to be sure, the movies at the time that were more inventive and impressive included "Deer Hunter" and "Midnight Express" to name just two. And in its own way this tries to touch on an explosive idea at the time (beyond the casual abortion aspect), which is the dignity of life and the black market in body organs.
It's all better than we have a right to expect, if you don't expect too much!
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