Dexter Cornell, an English Professor becomes embroiled in a series of murders involving people around him. Dexter has good reason to want to find the murderer but hasn't much time. He finds... See full summary »

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(screenplay), (story) | 2 more credits »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
Mrs. Fitzwaring
...
...
Gail Cornell
...
Bernard
Robin Johnson ...
Cookie Fitzwaring
...
Nicholas Lang (as Rob Knepper)
...
Graham Corey
...
Detective Ulmer
Jack Kehoe ...
Detective Brockton
...
Elaine Wells
Karen Radcliffe ...
Jane Corey
...
Chief Resident
Lee Gideon ...
Mr. Fitzwaring
Edit

Storyline

Dexter Cornell, an English Professor becomes embroiled in a series of murders involving people around him. Dexter has good reason to want to find the murderer but hasn't much time. He finds help and comfort from one of his students, Sydney Fuller. Written by Rob Hartill

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Someone poisoned Dexter Cornell. He's got to find out who. He's got to find out why. He's got to find out now. In 24 hours, he'll be Dead On Arrival.

Genres:

Mystery | Thriller

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

18 March 1988 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Dead on Arrival  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Gross:

$12,706,478 (USA)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(some sequences)|

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The movie's MacGuffin was not just the one thing but the film utilizes "two central MacGuffins" according to show-business trade paper 'Variety'. These were an unpublished fiction novel manuscript and the identity of the person who lethally poisoned Professor Dexter Cornell (Dennis Quaid). See more »

Goofs

Dexter suddenly gains glasses when he first asks Sydney to join him for a date. See more »

Quotes

Dexter Cornell: So, who are you going to kill for your next novel?
Hal Petersham: All I need is this one break; after that, I can write anything I want. And you can bet that I won't sit on my laurels like you did!
Dexter Cornell: Well, at least they *were* my laurels.
See more »

Crazy Credits

The opening Touchstone Logo is in black & white and the logo's flash is accompanied by a thunder clap. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Super Mario Bros: This Ain't No Video Game (2014) See more »

Soundtracks

REBEL YELL
Written by Billy Idol & Steve Stevens
Performed by Billy Idol
Courtesy of Chrysalis Records
See more »

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User Reviews

 
A man is given a deadly , slow-action poison and has only 24 hours to identify his murderous
14 January 2013 | by See all my reviews

Someone poisoned named Dexter Cornell (Dennis Quaid as an unsettling college professor) and he's got to find out who . He's got to find out why . He's got to find out now . In 24 hours, he'll be Dead On Arrival. He along with a friend student (Meg Ryan) frantically seek who is responsible and why he was targeted for death . His search for the suspect is further complicated by the fact that he is being sought by the police on phony charges of killing .

Mediocre remake of the 1949 Noir film that contains thrills , suspense , a complex intrigue and plot twists . The starring , Dennis Quaid , relates his own lethal murder become himself in detective and spend his ending moments trying to uncover his hit men . As his time runs out,he has only hours to identify , he desperately seeks to discover who is responsible his death . The search for the suspect is further complicated by the facts of numerous turns , deceits and a twisted intrigue . Passable acting by Dennis Quaid as a teacher becomes embroiled in a series of murders involving people around him and supported by Meg Ryan as a likable but reluctant student , both of whom married after shooting , though nowadays are separated themselves. Supporting cast in frankly enjoyable , such as Charlotte Rampling , Daniel Stern , Jane Kaczmarek , Christopher Neame , Robert Knepper , Jay Patterson and the deceased Brion James .

Colorful cinematography throughout the story , the color in the film begins to drain to monochrome, thus representing the central character's deteriorating health as the poison steadily takes it's toll until it is in black and white as in the opening - presumably showing the flashback catching up to the current time-line of the story . Screeching and inappropriate musical score composed by means of synthesizer .The motion picture was middlingly directed by Rocky Morton ans Annabel Jenkel , the same people who brought ¨Max Headrom¨to TV series . This story results to be a remake from ¨DOA¨ (1969) a dark B-thriller directed by Rudolph Mate with Edmond O'Brien , Luther Adler and Pamela Britton . It was also followed by a inferior remake as ¨Color me dead¨(1969) by Eddie Davis with Tom Tryon , Carolyn Jones and Rick Jason


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