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The Films of Michael Apted

7 Plus Seven

The Triple Echo

Stardust

The Squeeze

21 Up

Agatha

Coal Miner's Daughter

Continental Divide

P'tang, Yang, Kipperbang

Gorky Park

Firstborn

28 Up

Bring on the Night

Critical Condition

Gorillas in the Mist

Class Action

35 Up

Thunderheart

Incident at Oglala

Blink

Moving the Mountain

Nell

Extreme Measures (May 17/18)

Based on a book by Michael Palmer, Extreme Measures follows emergency-room doctor Guy Luthan as he begins investigating the mysterious disappearance of a patient that died on his watch - with Guy's inquiry eventually drawing the attention of a famed neurosurgeon named Lawrence Myrick (Gene Hackman). It's a solid premise that's employed to mostly entertaining and engaging effect by director Michael Apted, as the filmmaker, working from Tony Gilroy's script, does an effective job of establishing the various characters and the progressively surprising narrative - with, in terms of the former, the movie benefiting substantially from Grant's thoroughly ingratiating turn as the too-curious-for-his-own-good protagonist. (And Hackman, admittedly relegated to a glorified cameo, delivers as commanding and compelling a performance as one might've anticipated.) It's just as apparent, though, that the movie's slightly overlong running time paves the way for a somewhat erratic midsection, and there's little doubt that the film, though entertaining throughout, does suffer from a hit-and-miss vibe compounded by an ongoing emphasis on less-than-engrossing sequences (eg Guy's descent into an underground haven for the homeless). Such concerns become moot once the comparatively enthralling third act rolls around, with the strength of this stretch heightened by an absolutely spellbinding confrontation between Grant and Hackman's respective characters. It's a high-water-mark moment that ensures Extreme Measures ends on a decidedly (and palpably) positive note, which confirms the picture's place as a solid medical thriller that's lamentably been forgotten in the years since its 1996 theatrical release.

out of

Inspirations

Always Outnumbered

42 Up

Me & Isaac Newton

The World is Not Enough

Click here for review.

Enigma

Enough

49 Up

Amazing Grace

The Chronicles of Narnia: The Voyage of the Dawn Treader

Click here for review.

56 Up

Unlocked

© David Nusair