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Two terminally ill patients in a hospital yearn for relief from their predicament. With little or no friends, they form an uneasy alliance and plot an escape for one last wild time. Written by
Murray Chapman <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Deck (Anthony Edwards) appears onscreen first as prospective purchaser of a sweet-featured, warm red & all decked-out Saab: "sleek, fine, and fast!" Then after the rather traumatizing experience of the test drive, the persistent salesman tells him that the warranty's 5 years- "I'll take that," he says. And- That, with utter conviction.
What a great opening to set the tone for this wonderful sleeper of a movie - which stars Timothy Dalton, Edwards, Janet McTeer, and Camille Codori. This film has all the essential elements touching the heart: attractive & sympathetic leads - humor - poignancy - and the encompass of existence, light & the dark of it.
Dalton never ceases to amaze me with the scope and range of his performances. He's deftly captured King Philip of France, Henry Darnley, Hamlet, Hotspur, Antony, Heathcliff, Rochester, James Bond, and others. He actually had the audacity to make this movie in between his two Bond films! He packs a powerful punch here as the very flawed but endearing Bancroft: a highly intelligent man on a relentless quest for fun in spite (or, is it because of?) the bleak prognosis of his life.
His partner in crime is Deck - an American being treated for the same affliction in the Charing Cross, London hospital. Despite their conflicts, their health, militant nursing sisters, and all constraints with the English law regarding ambulances, together they depart for a momentous trek across the channel to Amsterdam.
There, they meet Hazel and Maureen - two best friends from London on their own trek: that, to reunite Hazel with the father of the baby she's pregnant with.
Bancroft and Deck had gone to Amsterdam in quest of a brothel - the girls in quest of a balding Hollander. What they all find instead is something completely different. They come to find a somewhat quirky enlightenment, each in their own individual way.
I highly recommend this little treasure of a movie - best watched snuggled on lots of pillows, under a warm down comforter, and with a glass of well-bodied wine.
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