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Final More at IMDbPro »

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13 out of 15 people found the following review useful:

Almost like watching paint dry ...

4/10
Author: vram22 from United States
16 August 2007

... but better - thanks to great character acting from Davis and Leary. However, the movie is just too long for what it delivers: a 2 hour, 2 person talk-fest in which nothing really happens.

This story involves a man who wakes up in a psychiatric ward / hospital and thinks it's the future and that he's going to be given a (final) lethal injection. The entire movie is basically about his interaction with his doctor in the patient room and hospital yard.

The only saving grace of this movie is the strong acting performances by both Leary and Davis. Leary is very dynamic and energetic (it's actually very impressive) and Davis does outstanding counterplay as his restrained, even-toned psychiatrist.

This makes them interesting to watch - to listen to. The memory flashbacks also help break up the dialog.

However, almost NOTHING happens in this movie - it's huge talk-fest and the story could have been shrunk to 30 or 40 minutes max. If it weren't for the quality of acting (which induced me to think the movie may get better), I would have quit watching early on. In the final analysis, I also realized that I didn't even get anything out of the great performances beyond recognizing the skill of actors.

If you're a Denis Leary or Hope Davis fan, you'll probably enjoy watching them act. For the average movie-goer, see something else.

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10 out of 10 people found the following review useful:

Denis Leary gives in near Oscar caliber work in a good movie

Author: MisterWhiplash from United States
17 April 2003

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Campbell Scott's Final is a semi science fiction story about a man who is cryogenically frozen in 1999, due to medical reasons, and is revived twenty-eight years later inside of a psychiatric ward in a hospital. The man Bill, played by Denis Leary, is a little delusional, but he has no misconceptions about what his fate could be via his doctor, played by Hope Davis.

As a psychological/character study of a man's past and mental state, Leary shows off his acting chops- his character is a bit deluded, yes, but he is never unbelievably so. This is the part of the picture that Scott gets right, and if he focused on this squarely (and not included a quasi Austin Powers plot-line) it would be a great film. There's something endlessly intriguing about Bill's story, and about the doctor who treats him. Too bad it wanders sometimes, like the lead character itself. Worth a look, mainly for the fans of the lead, but also for those looking for a different sort of independent/sci-fi experience where the world isn't that far ahead in less than thirty years. B+

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12 out of 14 people found the following review useful:

A good movie that I did not expect

9/10
Author: bbbl67 from Ottawa, Canada
25 January 2004

Okay, it is a not a sci-fi movie in the sense of laser gun battles or travelling through time warps, or anything like that. In fact, you almost have to be told that it is science-fiction, it plays out more like a subtle love story, but mostly like a psychological drama. Another interesting thing about this movie is that it is a slow movie, but it absolutely grabs your attention.

Denis Leary turned in a great performance, such natural speech, and without his usual foul-mouth on top of that too! Him and Hope Davis convince you that there was a bond that developed between them, and under any other circumstances this bond could've led to a quiet comfortable life together. There is a scene at the end which is touching, it almost reminds you of an elderly couple who know their life together is coming to an end and are saying their final goodbyes to each other.

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13 out of 16 people found the following review useful:

Haunting.....

8/10
Author: bhaktigirl from United States
26 September 2006

I saw this movie twice, in a theater. I saw it the first time due to my fondness for both stars, and ended up loving it so much I went back 3 days later. There's not much sign of Leary's usual persona- he's excellent as a dazed & confused but maybe not all that delusional patient. I liked Hope Davis in it, too, but Leary was really the center, and the film keeps you guessing as to how accurate his memories are, and his paranoia. The end is so simple and yet one of the most emotionally powerful & devastating I've ever seen. It's a pity more people haven't seen this. It shows what you can do with a bare minimum of scenery/sets but also a great script with actors up to the task....

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12 out of 17 people found the following review useful:

A Gem for Dennis Leary

8/10
Author: Robert W. Anderson (bayareabob@mac.com) from United States
25 April 2004

I always knew Dennis could act. He just never had material this good. There is no action in this film, about 80% of the film is in one room. But this is a well written, that is well acted. It's not easy to see where this film is going. I can recommend it enough to some who liked a film like My Dinner with Andre'. Not that there is any similarity in story, but if you can enjoy a film that's strongly driven by the writing and acting, you'll like this film. And if you can't do that don't watch this, I don't want you writing a bad review if you don't like it, and possibly turning someone

off.

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11 out of 16 people found the following review useful:

Interesting, but no big twist, and no big deal.

3/10
Author: denos-3
27 October 2004

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

The Good: Given the Bad (see below) this film is surprisingly good at hooking you. If only it had carried through. Also, from reading the other comments, it appears that fans of Denis Leary can't stand Hope Davis and visa versa - yet they both have excellent moments, if you're a fan of either, you might want to see this film just because.

The Bad (SPOILERS!): The story and its staging promise dark complexities, revelations and an emotional ride. It does not deliver -- worse, it doesn't really try. The story is illogical on almost every front.

Illogical Plot 1: The patient wakes from a coma with 'delusions' that are in fact what's really going on. But how does a coma patient know what happened while he was out? (we never find out). Given that this is not an action or mystery film - what are these delusions supposed to be setting up?

Illogical Plot 2: Perhaps we're supposed to be asking ourselves "is he sane or isn't he?". Yet the truth is revealed in a straight forward manner over the course of several scenes 2/3 of the way through the film. Denis Leary does a decent job with the material, but the script and the director portray his character as exactly what he is - an average person who's heavily disorientated and distrusting in a situation that, what do you know, induces disorientation and distrust. {He's also emotionally disturbed by the personally trauma that led to his being in a coma - but that's another thread that is never fully explained or incorporated into the plot.} So where's the tension in a documentary like presentation of a distressed patient who bares no emotional secrets and who's broadcasting the end of the film in his first scene?

Illogical Motivations: The patient was frozen three years into his coma, and is then thawed 25 years later, specifically so that his body's natural immunity can be used to fight a horrible plague. Naturally, this requires a medical procedure that will kill the patient. So why do the doctors spend weeks trying to cure his delusions? Especially as they know he's not actually delusional? Why don't they chop him up day one? Its never explained.

By the way, you'd think what with the plague and the intent of killing their patient and all, there would be lots of emotional complexity with the staff, right? And that the patient (who dies more or less willingly) would have a complex internal dialog going on, right? Particularly in a film that uses the style of a dramatic character study, right? Wrong. It's not that they attempt it and fail - its not even in the script.

I wish there had been some big revelation in the end. Even a really bad one. Some justification for my staying up an hour past bedtime to see this film through.

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6 out of 7 people found the following review useful:

captivating and enjoyable

8/10
Author: Matthew Vecera from United States
6 April 2007

Although Denis Leary, the male lead, and Jim Gaffigan, who plays a prominent supporting role, are best known as professional comedians, make no mistake. This is a fine, science fiction drama.

The movie is driven by the dialog and the slowly unfolding plot of a great screenplay. There are essentially no special effects other than the flashbacks, and they are really more a product of good editing. The story is compelling and captivating, pulling you along as the larger plot points are revealed.

I'm sure this movie made no real box office, but it is absolutely worth the rental. Leary is shockingly good in this movie and proves that he has the acting chops of an Oscar winner. Davis' performance is solid, but very demure. One could argue that she had a supporting role instead of the female lead. Although Gaffigan has a lot of screen-time, he does not have much dialog. Regardless, Gaffigan delivers a stalwart and believable performance.

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7 out of 10 people found the following review useful:

Good character driven movie

9/10
Author: BigGuy from United States
3 September 2002

Many people would not like this movie because so much of what is going on is never revealed. In a way the situation even seems a trifle contrived. Had the same story been done in standard big Hollywood fashion, there would have been special effects of the freezing and other SGI's galore. More attention would have been paid to the background situation and not just the main two characters.

I am very glad that this movie was not done that way. Hope Davis and Denis Leary do an amazing job in this film. Usually known for his caustic small screen/comedy special personality, Leary plays a man who lost everything in his life, and his sense of reality. He does an excellent job, particularly early in the movie, establishing a man on the verge of breakdown. Hope Davis plays his therapist. She portrays a soulful character who is stuck in an incredibly difficult position.

Together they have great chemistry that isn't forced. The love that blossoms between them is the obviously dictated by the story, but in seems to unfold naturally. Early on they spar verbally, but eventually start to trust each other. When the finale rolls around, the scene doesn't seem forced but rather is poignant. And although Davis really sells the finale, Leary also does a fine job.

Again, this movie is not for everyone, but many will appreciate it.

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4 out of 5 people found the following review useful:

Intolerable first hour, but then everything changes

3/10
Author: alanjj from Greenwich Village, NY, USA
11 December 2001

The first hour of this was a really minimal mental hospital movie. Instead of the usual cast of intermingling crazies, you just have one guy. But, like in every mental hospital movie, you are supposed to wonder who is really sane, and who is insane.

It took at least an hour, maybe more, for this film to grab me. I'm sure I would have walked out and seen something else at the multiplex except I was being blocked from my exit by several large women voraciously eating ribs to my left, and a couple of snorers to my right. So I sat.

The first hour is mostly a dialog between the mental patient (Denis Leary) and his young female doctor. Leary is babbling about many things, but within his babblings there is more truth than he knows, or than the audience knows. Like "The Others" and "The Sixth Sense" and "Fight Club", a basic premise changes in the middle of the picture, and all that you thought was true changes.

The movie has a great performance, almost a solo performance, by Denis Leary. He place a variation on the Denis Leary fast-talking wiseguy character, but his perceptions and body language carry the movie. Everyone else is so underplayed, they are not worth mentioning.

This is mostly a one-set movie. It would work as well or better on stage. It's a brave choice for Campbell Scott for his first solo-directed movie. I recently saw Lumet's 12 Angry Men, and Scott is not nearly as adept at portraying claustrophobia as Lumet. But ultimately, the movie is frightening, it's poignant, and it works. But it's also a downer. See it on Christmas Day.

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7 out of 11 people found the following review useful:

Boooooooooooooooring!

4/10
Author: George Parker from Orange County, CA USA
25 January 2003

"Final" tells of an institutionalized man (Leary) and his psychiatrist (Davis) who sort through his confused mental state only to find the aberrations are more outside his mind than in it. An unfortunate film with much unrealized potential, "Final" starts slow, builds slow, and then fizzles. What could have been a darkish psychodrama or a gleaming love story becomes, in the "Final" analysis, little more than excessive tedium in spite of the best efforts of two well cast actors. Recommended only as a last resort for the bored channel surfer or fans of the players. (D+)

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