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Desperate Measures (1998)

R  |   |  Action, Crime, Drama  |  30 January 1998 (USA)
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Reviews: 78 user | 54 critic

San Francisco police officer Frank Connor is in a frantic search for a compatible bone marrow donor for his gravely ill son. There's only one catch: the potential donor is convicted ... See full summary »



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Title: Desperate Measures (1998)

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Cast overview, first billed only:
Captain Jeremiah Cassidy
Nate Oliver
Sarah Davis
Ed Fayne
Medical Inmate
Peter Weireter ...
SWAT Team Commander
Derrick Wilson
Steve Park ...
Dr. Gosha
SWAT in Airduct
Cell Guard


San Francisco police officer Frank Connor is in a frantic search for a compatible bone marrow donor for his gravely ill son. There's only one catch: the potential donor is convicted multiple murderer Peter McCabe who sees a trip to the hospital as the perfect opportunity to get what he wants most: freedom. With McCabe's escape, the entire hospital becomes a battleground and Connor must pursue and, ironically, protect the deadly fugitive who is his son's only hope for survival. Written by Sony Pictures (with permission)

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


His son needs a DNA donor to live. The clock is ticking. The only match is a vicious killer. Now all Frank Conner has to do is catch him. See more »

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for violence and language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

30 January 1998 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Medidas Desesperadas  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office


$50,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$5,833,412 (USA) (30 January 1998)


$13,668,777 (USA) (10 April 1998)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:




Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


The film is set in San Francisco, but actually filmed in Pittsburgh. They used Grant Street in downtown Pittsburgh because it is a brick road like many of the roads in San Francisco. Also the front of the hospital is really One Mellon Bank Center located on Grant Street, the same building in the helicopter scene of Jean-Claude Van Damme's Sudden Death (1995). See more »


Rigging to make semi trailer appear to jackknife is visible. See more »


Peter McCabe: What are you gonna do? Shoot me, Frank?
See more »


Remade as Jung (2000) See more »


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User Reviews

Looking for bone marrow. Maybe a brain as well.
9 March 2005 | by (New York) – See all my reviews

Barbet Schroeder doesn't fare well in this directorial attempt. "Desperate Measures" is a film that has been seen in other forms before, better made. The screen play by David Klass doesn't make sense at all.

With that out of the way, this hospital thriller is fun to watch because of the intensity of both lead men performances. Michael Keaton, the bad guy in this film, shows an evil side not found in any of his performances before. He is equally matched by Andy Garcia, not one of our favorite actors. Mr. Garcia tends to shout and get incomprehensible at the most dramatic moments.

The last sequences of the film pack a lot of action, and once we have settled back to accept the silliness of the whole thing, we go for the ride. The chase and bridge scenes are staged well; they'll keep the viewer glued to the screen.

Watch Michael Keaton as we haven't seen him before.

9 of 14 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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