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.
Skip and Harry are framed for a bank robbery and end up in a western prison. The two eastern boys are having difficulty adjusting to the new life until the warden finds that Skip has a ... See full summary »
Georg Stanford Brown
Richard Pryor is playing three different roles here. The first being a poor orange picker named Leroy Jones who gets laid off when by mistake he joins the worker's union during one of their... See full summary »
Harvey and Zoey, two tourists travelling through Israel, discover an ancient scroll describing the life of Herschel, the man who was almost Moses. Herschel receives the command from God to ... See full summary »
"Sugar" Ray is the owner of an illegal casino, who contend with the pressures of vicious gangster and corrupt policemen who want to see him go out of business. In the world of organized ... See full summary »
Alek is an immigrant from the Soviet Union who was a talented boxer in his day, but he was not allowed on the Soviet national team because he was a Jew. Depressed and discouraged, he meets ... See full summary »
Klaus Maria Brandauer,
Car Wash is about a close-knit group of employees who one day have all manner of strange visitors coming onto their forecourt, including Richard Pryor as a preaching 'wonder-man' who is ... See full summary »
Three workers, Zeke, Jerry and Smokey, are working at a car plant and drinking their beers together. One night when they steal away from their wives to have some fun they get the idea to ... See full summary »
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
The exterior of the medical facility was the High Point Regional Hospital in High Point, North Carolina, USA. The building was renovated after the filming of the movie. See more »
Box opens the garage door, yells about his dog being kicked. However, Stuckey kicks the patient who thinks he's a dog several seconds before Box actually opens the garage door. There is no way that Box could have seen Stucky kick the dog. See more »
This is the end of the road. I don't think I need you anymore.
See more »
You know you're in trouble when the title says it all...
Never trust the ratings in here, some say from time to time, cause they never reveal what lies beneath some underrated precious jewels and also some overrated classics. "Critical Condition", however, deserves the current negative evaluation, not much because it's a terrible picture, cause it's not in fact. The problem is that the movie is so misguided despite its effective (and few) positive scenes that you suspect the talented people involved in its making were way over their heads in thinking they're creating good comedy. Richard Pryor alone, only in stand-up routines, and we all know it that his films worked better if he had a partner - not even if a brief companion being Pryor and Gene Wilder one of the most interesting duos of comedy. But the supporting cast assembled makes this a little enjoyable, though not going too far.
I believe the setting given here would benefit more a thriller/horror movie than a comedy but if the writers think they can find real humor in it, well, it's their opinion. Pryor is a scam lawyer who is sent to jail after being framed in a suspected deal with some mobsters. Knowing that he's about to get killed in prison, he acts like an insane person during trial much to everyone's belief and sent to treatment on a mental facility for 21 days in order to establish if his crazy or not. But during a huge storm that cuts the power and contacts of the place, he manages to get out of the psychiatric warden and ends up getting confused as an important medical doctor whose arriving was long waited there. Now it's up to this fake doctor to help the staff of this chaotic hospital filled with regular patients (who comes up with this stuff, a mental hospital glued next to a regular facility?), managing his best and worst in a place with almost no electricity, with its disappearing administrator and with a dangerous criminal (Joe Dallesandro) on the loose, and just like him also trying to get away from there.
Half an hour goes by without any laughs, and almost with no understanding of what those loud characters are saying for the most part. Only when the absurd starts to take place is that movie progresses, gets a little involving yet eternally confusing and lacking in substance. But already too late. And what Michael Apted was doing with this comedy? He's trustworthy directing drama and action flicks; his direction here feels very uninspired, more like "in it for the money" (and I bet no one got paid all that much). I'm not recommending "Critical Condition" but if you wanna see it for yourself there's room for enjoyment in scenes like the "Apocalypse Now" parody with Pryor putting a helicopter inside of the hospital to generate energy in the building; the great presence of Rachel Ticotin as the substitute administrator, a fine dramatic effort in showing how important decision must be during troubled conditions; Bob Dishy finally getting a noteworthy and extended role as the doctor who puts pressure on everybody including Pryor. Randall 'Tex' Cobb, Joe Mantegna, Bob Saget, Sylvia Miles Jon Polito and a few others have fine roles, the best they could get.
Well, final diagnosis: not worthy of much attention, suffers from a severe case of lack of great humor, and it's almost a waste of time. The medication for it can be found in all other Pryor's movies. This one is just wrong. 4/10
0 of 1 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?