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Michael Bosworth is a psychotic criminal who is about to go on trial however, he seduces his lawyer into helping him escape. But as they try to make their getaway, she's left behind. He decides to wait for her to come to him, so he decides to hide at the house of the Cornells. Now it appears that the Cornells have problems of their own. The husband and wife are separated. And there's an FBI agent after them who is using the lawyer to lead them to Bosworth. Written by
Joseph Hayes, the film's source novelist and playwright of both the 1954 novel and 1955 play, also wrote the screenplay for the original classic 1955 Humphrey Bogart film The Desperate Hours (1955) and also co-wrote the script for this 1990 version. Hayes won an Edgar Award from the Mystery Writers of America for Best Motion Picture Screenplay for the screenplay for the original 1955 The Desperate Hours (1955) film. See more »
[Brenda warned her agents to not fire at the house, but she wasn't heard and they fired anyway. A cop tries to rescue her]
Are you hurt?
Only in my ego!
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Cimino: high on style. low on logic. form=content. go figure.
I think on a certain level this film works quite well. First, throw out everything you know about the 1955 version. Next, abandon paying too much attention to how the plot progresses (gee, Kelly Lynch's character seems to disappear for extended periods of time, and it's amazing that the FBI ever found following her to be worth it. And she is supposed to be one of the smarter characters, but then again, you took what Lindsay Crouse's character said about her too seriously.) The film has a most curious tone, and just when you think it's going to turn into an art film, we get a shoot-em-up or some other plot contrivance to bring it back to earth. The soundtrack is a moody pastiche of 50's style orchestrations (no rock music!) and recalls moody post-noir thrillers of the late 50's-early 60's.
And what a fascinating line-up of players, performances, and characters. Kelly Lynch's acting directions must have been "look snappy, especially topless, act like you just ingested a gram of cocaine, and all will go well."
One of these first years Cimino will put together all the pieces and come up with a really good, coherent film. For a really good obtuse film, reference Walter Hill's "The Driver" with Ryan O'Neal.
Oh, and if you ever thought you could mess with Lindsay Crouse, this film should dispel that notion. She's much badder than Mickey Rourke - and that's the biggest surprise of the whole picture! And with a lot less screen time, too. And by golly I guess Mickey Rourke's character is just an obsessive lover of the enigmatic Lynch. That explains a lot.
Coolest line in the film: FBI agent says to Crouse (after she got shot in the leg) : "Where are you hit?" Answer: "In the ego."
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