5.8/10
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30 user 41 critic

The Terminal Man (1974)

Hoping to cure his violent seizures, a man agrees to a series of experimental microcomputers inserted into his brain but inadvertently discovers that violence now triggers a pleasurable response his brain.

Director:

Mike Hodges

Writers:

Michael Crichton (novel), Mike Hodges
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
George Segal ... Harry Benson
Joan Hackett ... Dr. Janet Ross
Richard Dysart ... Dr. John Ellis
Donald Moffat ... Dr. Arthur McPherson
Michael C. Gwynne ... Dr. Robert Morris
William Hansen William Hansen ... Dr. Ezra Manon
Jill Clayburgh ... Angela Black
Norman Burton ... Det. Capt. Anders
James Sikking ... Ralph Friedman
Matt Clark ... Gerhard
Jim Antonio ... Richards
Gene Borkan Gene Borkan ... Benson's Guard
Burke Byrnes ... Benson's Guard
Jordan Rhodes ... Questioner No. 1
Dee Carroll Dee Carroll ... Night Nurse
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Storyline

As the result of a head injury, brilliant computer scientist Harry Benson begins to experience violent seizures. In an attempt to control the seizures, Benson undergoes a new surgical procedure in which a microcomputer is inserted into his brain. The procedure is not entirely successful. Written by Bruce Janson <bruce@cs.su.oz.au>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Harry Benson is a brilliant computer scientist. For three minutes a day, he is violently homicidal.


Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

19 June 1974 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Aivoryöstö See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Warner Bros. See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The film never had a UK cinema release. See more »

Quotes

Dr. John Ellis: [Finishing up a briefing to a large audience of doctors and nurses, prior to the operation that will be performed on Benson] We have performed this operation successfully on animals 57 times. This will be the first such procedure on a human being.
Dr. Ezra Manon: [arising from his chair in the back of the audience] I'm grateful to Dr. Ellis that we are talking about a man, and not an animal. It seems to me that all the technical data, so skillfully expounded, is mere paper over the cracks. The patient is also a ...
[...]
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Connections

Referenced in Young Star Gazers (1975) See more »

Soundtracks

Goldberg Variation No. 25
by Johann Sebastian Bach (as J.S. Bach)
Played by Glenn Gould
Courtesy Columbia Records
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Much better than given credit for
26 April 2008 | by TeresaSee all my reviews

This is a superior film with brilliant set design and costuming. From the sterility of the Hospital (known only as "Babel" from the subtly placed and nearly invisible emblems), to the mind-numbing anonymity of the staff uniforms, few films are as well dressed as this. Only the dissenting staff, Dr's Ross and Manon, show any hint of individuality in their work apparel. Ironically it is Benson the patient, supposedly insane, who displays the most humanity of all, with the possible exception of Dr. Ross. Segal was brilliant, and severely under-utilized in the film. Perhaps the filmmakers thought it necessary to de-emphasize Benson, in order to illustrate the dehumanization of the hospital and its staff. But a bit more contrast could have been provided IMO. Still, the film is excellent nonetheless.

Today's audiences however, with their short attention spans, will likely be permanently disappointed. To those who complain that this film is "slow" (and they are legion); I would say to either learn some patience, or simply avoid the film and go back to watching action/adventure.

While made in the early 1970's, it is highly relevant to today's world as well. Replace the "wires in the brain" with today's over-prescribed Ritalin, SSRI's, and other similar drugs, and you will see the point.

This is an excellent movie which deserves to be on DVD, with commentary by Crichton, Hodges and/or Segal. They are all still with us as of 4/2008 (Sadly Ms. Hackett is not). The sooner the better.


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