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Bringing Out the Dead (1999)

6.8
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Ratings: 6.8/10 from 47,937 users   Metascore: 70/100
Reviews: 381 user | 168 critic | 34 from Metacritic.com

Haunted by the patients he failed to save, an extremely burned-out Manhattan ambulance paramedic fights to maintain his sanity over three fraught and turbulent nights.

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(novel), (screenplay)
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
...
...
...
...
Nurse Constance
...
Cy Coates
...
Dr. Hazmat
...
Nurse Crupp
...
Kanita
Cynthia Roman ...
Rose
...
Griss
Cullen O. Johnson ...
Mr. Burke (as Cullen Oliver Johnson)
...
Captain Barney (as Arthur Nascarella)
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Storyline

An Easter story. Frank is a Manhattan medic, working graveyard in a two-man ambulance team. He's burned out, exhausted, seeing ghosts, especially a young woman he failed to save six months' before, and no longer able to save people: he brings in the dead. We follow him for three nights, each with a different partner: Larry, who thinks about dinner, Marcus, who looks to Jesus, and Tom, who wallops people when work is slow. Frank befriends the daughter of a heart victim he brings in; she's Mary, an ex-junkie, angry at her father but now hoping he'll live. Frank tries to get fired, tries to quit, and keeps coming back, to work and to Mary, in need of his own rebirth. Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

ghost | paramedic | ambulance | rescue | hell | See more »

Taglines:

From the Director of Taxi Driver See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Drama | Thriller

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for gritty violent content, drug use and language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

22 October 1999 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Vidas al límite  »

Box Office

Budget:

$55,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

£356,544 (UK) (7 January 2000)

Gross:

£967,925 (UK) (21 January 2000)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

| |

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

In the scene where Frank attempts to save Rose, the actors acted out their movements in reverse. The sequence itself was then played in reverse. This adds to the dreamlike effect of the scene in which the snow rises. See more »

Goofs

When Mr. Burke codes after he's brought into the E.R., the doctor orders for him to be defibrillated at 400 joules, then 500. While older defibrillators could deliver a 400 joule shock, modern defibrillators only give a maximum shock of 360 joules. Either way, Advanced Cardiac Life Support protocols at the time (before 2005) called for a starting energy of 200 joules, then 300 and 360 for subsequent shocks. See more »

Quotes

Marcus: I'm a true cocksman. I don't mix my seed. The only time I touch a white woman is when I'm holding her down for the police.
See more »

Connections

References 8MM (1999) See more »

Soundtracks

Combination of the Two
Written by Sam Andrew
Performed by Big Brother and the Holding Company
Courtesy of Columbia Records
By Arrangement with Sony Music Licensing
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
Surreal, strange, special and very, very good
12 February 2006 | by (Sweden) – See all my reviews

This surreal portrayal of a stressed-out depressed, alcoholic and generally weird paramedic is a movie you cannot watch just like that. I recommend watching it late at night, but not too tired, since you have to be quite alert to catch everything that's going on.

The basic plot is about an ambulance driver(Nicolas Cage can act!) who hasn't saved anyone for months and begins to doubt he can save anyone anymore. He drinks booze and coffee and the result is a great mess. This is not a "beginning to the end" kind of movie. When the movie ends, nothing is really solved.

The acting is pretty much flawless. Nicolas Cage does his best performance to date, and his paramedic buddies and the people he encounters are all very well portrayed. John Goodman is a fat, sweaty but somewhat likable paramedic, Tom Sizemore(!) is a psychotic ambulance driver who has his very own view of the job, Ving Rhames is a delivered Christian who takes the job as an opportunity to save souls, Mark Anthony is an interesting street weirdo, and Patricia Arquette is a weary woman who loses her father.

The imagery is very good too. New York whizzes past, full of lights and darkness. It's gritty, it's moody and it's surreal.

If you can stand a little unorthodox cinema then you'll like Bringing Out the Dead. But be sure to be in the mood, or the experience will be very different.

Oh, and I salute all the paramedics and other health care heroes out there. If your job is anywhere near this movies, you're the greatest.


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Worst music for a movie Evilmperor
Scorsese's most underrated movie? paustecri
Patricia Arquettedoes TERRIBLE in this film... TyrelLynes
on my list of never to watch again suekh
This Film's Problems gayfordeniro
I loved Marc Anthony's role ginlover92545
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