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Bringing Out the Dead

Starring: Patricia Arquette, Nick Cage, John Goodman
Directed By: Martin Scorsese

Did you know Scorsese was an avante garde kind of director? Well, if you just know him from GoodFellas (DeNiro fame), you probably should be forwarned. Rent Taxi Driver (more DeNiro), for the feel of his hectic style. Should you get to the end of Taxi Driverand say, 'what idiot directed this piece of Eraserhead-like crap' don't see BOTD. However, if you loved the oddness of the script and the over the edge and straight into the canyon directing style, run to see BOTD. This flick's definitely up your alley. Cage is creepin up the screen, in an especially unnerving performance. Oh, I loved Taxi Driver, so you know where I stand about Scorsese. Is genious too strong an adjective? Nah.

Frank (Nicholas 'Boo Boo Boy' Cage), is known as Father Frank. The script says it's 'cause he resembles a priest. I say because of his heavenly looks. Is this the kinda stud muffins they're hiding at the Vatican? Can I convert? Anyhoodlum, Frankie is a street-wise New Yorker who smokes too much, likes his coffee, drinks heavily, oh, and works as an EMT (Emergency Medical Technician).Yep, he's an ambulance man. You know this is just the madman you want holding the little flame of your life in his sweaty over caffeinated palms. This poor Frank guy is heading for the mental and physical breakdown lane at about 125 MPH and his brakes are out, if you get my drift, and I think you do.Now he starts seeing the dead he was unable to save. Oh, that's gonna help him hold it together. Tah. One in particular, Rosie, blames him for 'killing her'. Of course she was a young street walking homeless asthmatic anorexic just bound to live into her seventies! Pleeaase. Okay, he may have made a wrong decision with her, hey he tried. But she just wont let it go. The other ghosts of errors past just attack him from the pits of hell while he's walking through his dreams. Rosie visits while he's working. Nice girl huh?

Frank picks up a frequently flat lining heart attack victim at 49th and 10th, Hell's Kitchen. He meets the guy's daughter, Mary Burke (Patricia 'what's with the hair'Arquette). Mary's an ex-junkie, that share's some smokes with ol' Frank and a slow relationship grows from their meeting back and forth in the emergency room.Hmm , I never thought about that. Lot's of cute men hang out there. Sure they may be injured or half dead, but hey, they'd be vulnerable. Pickins is pickins.

The real story here is not about Mary and Frank. -though it is fun to see one of Hollywood's real life happily married couples work so strongly together. Nicky seemed to warm up. Ur..ah...Okay that's a stretch. But he wasn't as mono-faced in this as usual. The real story's about the lives of these life catchers. The techs on the street.

Just hanging with a few adrenalin pumped men for a few days.Their routine calls, during the drugs daze of the early ninties. This is the real poop behind the medical emergency scenes. Scorsese and team don't hold back.

Bringing Out The Dead is an explosive, almost documentive look at this 'crack' ruling notch in time. People were discovering it and left and right.It's the younger New York, in it's bitter teen age years. Now, NYC has graduated from college, calmed down and wears Armani suits-it's much cleaner and safer- don't let this movie make you cancel your trip to the Big MacIntosh-it's still the greatest city on Earth (paid for be the Mayor Guliani...).

Frank's coworkers (costars) on his shifts switch off. He travels around with a few of the best characters on screen recently. John 'just once can you not ask me about Roseanne' Goodman was excellent as Larry.

Ving 'boom boom' Rhames is the smooth talking, sexual healing, God fearing, Marcus.

Then, Tom 'you know me...Christ let me in...I swear I was in Saving Private Ryan...Come on it's cold out here' Sizemore, is Frank's ex-partner, Wall. Wall's kind of a big bully pigman, yet strangely competent when helping folks.Each has his ride with the deteriating Frank and just kind of let's him go on his journey straight to Loo Loo Land. Very realistic.

A strong warning: bring your MPB (Movie Puke Bag) for the baby mouth to mouth Cage performs. Bring also, an open mind to see Cage different from other roles, and to enjoy if not understand the importance of Scorsese.

Paul Schrader (who scripted Deniro vehicles Taxi Driver, Raging Bull etc.), adapted Joe Connelly's extraordinary novel into a riveting couple of days into Frank's world.

BTW doesn't Cage resemble Willie Wonka (and the Chocolate Factory's, young Gene Wilder)? Rent it...look at the guy! Isn't that bizarre!

Okay, Deniro's not in this...isn't that bizarre?

Snack Recommendation: Pepperoni Pizza and black coffee, lot's of it. Maybe even buy Bobby Darin's single 'Black Coffee' for audio



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