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Desperate Measures VHS DVD

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Andy Garcia plays a cop who is a father of a boy with bone cancer.  The movie starts out with he and a buddy breaking into the FBI to search prison records to find a compatible donor.  The whole computer search scene was just a plot device to show how far Garcia will go to save his kid.  He threatens a security guard but doesn't hurt him.

Michael Keaton plays a genius psychotic criminal who is the tissue match for the boy.  Sort of a younger, more active Hannibal Lector.  He's supposed to have escaped at least once and killed at least once in prison.  So they take precautions nearly as over-the-top as Silence of the Lambs.  Like when he's talking to Garcia he's strapped to a rolling chair.

He has a few good lines, like "Imagine my amusement at the irony that I can kill one more time."  They show Keaton planning his escape attempt.   Including researching the plans of the hospital where the procedure will be performed, dislocating his thumb so he can get out of cuffs, procuring an inhibitor to the likely anesthetic, etc.

It's during the exposition about the hospital that we begin to see the overly elaborate setting the writers had to come up with.  I guess the hospital is connected to some prison via a walkway several stories up.  It was never clear to me if this was the same prison that Keaton was in to begin with.  Anyway, this gives the writers a chance to have some hospital scenes along with some cop-hostage scenes.  Risking cops' lives is probably less objectionable to Hollywierd.

The kid was okay, but he had a few really cheesy lines.  They put a tight time limit on everything by removing the kid's marrow first and stating that this shuts down his immune system, but that apparently it'll magically kick back in when the new marrow is injected.  Then, the writers ignore all that and go ahead and remove the kid from the isolation system and take him to a dirty, dust-laden basement.

Some standard Hollywierd verisimilitude gaffes.  The oncologist doubles as an ER doctor after the escape scene.  The cops give up their guns in a hostage situation.   They tend to have the kid in low-lit rooms, even during the procedure.  The kid's room is somewhere a long way from Keaton.  Keaton sliding down a laundry chute with paddles was silly, as was the fast backwards scene on the freeway.

Overall, Keaton and Garcia do a passable job, but they didn't have much to work with.   On my brother's Total Movie Value Scale, this movie is a late-nite Cable.  The roles are a little too simple and the setting a little too contrived.

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