Desperate Measures

Bomb Rating: 

The villain is beyond evil, yet the audience is forced to root for him because everybody else on screen has the combined intelligence of warm spit.

"Desperate Measures" is one of those films where the villain is beyond evil, yet the audience is forced to root for him because everybody else on screen has the combined intelligence of warm spit.

After the first tense encounter between FBI agent Frank Connor (Andy Garcia) and Hannibal Lecter act-a-like, Peter McCabe (Michael Keaton - in a "bold, dramatic departure" according to the press notes), you wish Connor would just put everybody (including the audience) out of misery and shoot himself. The plot, which even the production notes admit is "intriguing, if unlikely," has Connor begging McCabe to be the donor for his son's bone marrow transplant because McCabe is the only available match.

After McCabe escapes, Connor chases him all over the hospital but can't shoot him because if he does, McCabe could die. Where exactly did Connor buy his brain? A few well-placed bullets in the legs, groin, or chest and this movie is done in thirty minutes. What about a good head shot? They're in a hospital for Christ's sake. Have a machine keep his body alive and suck out his marrow. Idiots.

In addition to the basic atmosphere of thoughtlessness, "Desperate Measures" also manages to beg these brilliant questions: Why is anybody with some wires taped to a credit card able to fool even the most advanced security system? What exactly possesses a high-security prison to allow one of its most dangerous prisoners Net access just before he's about to be sent into a security-risk situation? And finally, how exactly do strips of plastic hanging from the ceiling constitute a sterile environment? My cat could have retired to the litter box and peed a better screenplay than this one.

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