On the day that a serial killer that he helped put away is supposed to be executed, a noted forensic psychologist and college professor receives a call informing him that he has 88 minutes left to live.
In 16th century Venice, when a merchant must default on a large loan from an abused Jewish moneylender for a friend with romantic ambitions, the bitterly vengeful creditor demands a gruesome payment instead.
Dr. Jack Kevorkian (1928 - 2011 ) in the 1990s, when he defies Michigan law assisting the suicide of terminally-ill persons. Support comes from his sister, a lab tech, the Hemlock Society president, and a lawyer. The child of survivors of the Armenian genocide interviews applicants: his sister video tapes them. He assembles a device allowing a person to initiate a three-chemical intravenous drip. The local D.A., the governor, and the Legislature respond. In court scenes, Kevorkian is sometimes antic. He's single-minded about giving dying individuals the right to determine how their lives will end. He wants the Supreme Court to rule. He picks a fight he can't win: is it hubris or heroism? Written by
When Dr. K is playing the flute, his fingers never moved like what the music was playing. See more »
[Jack Kevorkian takes the stand, Thompson is the prosecutor]
Can we all presume just for the hell of it that we are really in a courtroom, okay? That there is a judge and a jury and real witnesses?
No, I will not presume. I refuse to presume.
Can we presume that this is a real trial here?
No, we can't. Because there's no law here. Am I wrong?
Prove it. Cite to me one common law case of assisted suicide. One.
I will ask the questions...
Go ahead. I'm listening. We're all waiting.
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I've seen "You Don't Know Jack" twice now and will certainly watch it several times more with friends coming to watch my DVR HD recording of this HBO TV movie. It's not easy to watch the harrowing scenes of terminal patients in great distress. But with an outstandingly intelligent script, first-class cinematography and stellar performances by all the actors it becomes compelling viewing. Like Marion Cotillard's portrayal of Edith Piaf in "La Vie en Rose", Pacino's incredible performance will leave us with the feeling that he has indeed become Dr Kevorkian for us. His powerful acting gains pace as the movie progresses until the final dramatic courtroom scenes end the remarkable story of a pioneer eccentric's human rights obsession. While overtly sympathetic to Kevorkian, all sides of the arguments for or against assisted suicide are fairly presented and leave one thinking about the subject for days. In addition to Pacino's tour de force role I think that Barry Levinson's inspired direction brings this movie to masterpiece status. I hope it will be released on DVD soon so that a much wider audience can see it.
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