Con man Kevin Lennihan framed in a jewel smuggling tries for an insanity plea and is sent to a hospital for review where he is confused for another doctor and takes over the hospital when a major storm hits.
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Kevin Lennihan is a con artist. But this time he's framed and comes before a judge. By claiming insanity, he hopes to get off the hook. He manages to end up in a hospital on Governor's Island, off the coast of New York for a mental examination. That night, a storm breaks out over the area, and the electricity to the hospital is broken. In the ensuing chaos that follows, Kevin is taken for a doctor, Eddie Slattery. Suddenly, he is in charge of a whole hospital! Written by
Tick off another Richard Pryor comedy vehicle, which actually wasn't too bad even though it had him playing the same sort of comic role and the humour could be put off by its heavy-handed running themes. Pryor stars as an ex-con who poses as a psycho to get out of a jail sentence, so the judge sends him to a hospital where he would find himself posing as an emergency room doctor one night in his attempt to escape during a cyclone because the doctors don't believe him to be insane. This hospital comedy is zany, crude and very often unhinged, as Pryor plays it neurotic with a certain deadpan quality and across him was the lovely Rachel Ticotin. The support cast surrounding him are quite good in their deliveries. Ruben Blades, Sylvia Miles, Joe Mantegna, Bob Dishy, Garrett Morris, Randel "Tex" Cobb, Bob Saget and John Polito. The hodge podge story throws around many ideas and gags in a downright chaotic manner, from mistaken identity to offbeat medical techniques and displaying confidence in those around you to act upon your own judgement leading the way. "Critical Condition" is far from a lethal injection, as in the end it all comes together in an amusing haphazard way led by the likable comedian Pryor.
"He doesn't need a second opinion".
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