Extraordinary Measures

30 Mar

Title: Extraordinary Measures
Year: 2010
Director: Tom Vaughan
Writer: Robert Nelson Jacobs, adapting from the book by Geeta Anand
Starring: Brendan Fraser, Harrison Ford, Keri Russell
MPAA Rating: PG, thematic material, language and a mild suggestive moment
Runtime: 105 min
Major Awards:
IMDb Rating: 6.3
Rotten Tomatoes: 29%

Extraordinary Measures is the first feature released by CBS Films and, quite honestly, it’s one that should have been better suited as a special in the network’s TV station because, even though Fraser and Ford are both really well-known actors, and Keri Russell is a sweetheart to many, including yours truly, and even though the story is quite compelling (and actually happened), the film itself delivers what a good TV movie sets out to deliver, but as a motion picture it falls way too short.

Two kids have a rare genetic disease that won’t grant them over a year to continue living but then their dad goes on to contact this daredevil scientist who may just have a possible cure. This is a story we have no doubt seen before, more than once even, but still, it’s a story that if executed correctly can make for a decent enough film.

Unfortunately, even though it has Fraser as the dad and Russell as the mother, the story doesn’t go anywhere close to where it could and to where it ought, with such fine actors as those two their relationship could have fueled the story into a moving film, but instead they connect only about the utmost necessary stuff, and we never get to see as deeply inside of them as we need to in order to genuinely feel for these characters. Sure, their kids are really sick, and for that we feel for them, but we feel for them as movie characters, not as real people.

Ford plays the doctor who has the cure, and who Fraser’s character flies out to seek,  in the real story the doctor is a guy who worked at Duke and was Asian, Ford probably had the character then molded to fit him, and to make it seem cooler because the doctor acted as though he didn’t care, like some sort of TV-movie Gregory House, and completely lost the essence of the real story, its these sort of things that fuck this one up, the film had plenty opportunities to be good, but it ended up being mediocre at its best, and utterly bad for the most part.

The reason I’m pissed at this film, and am giving it the low grade I’m giving it, is because it has Keri Russell and lets her go to waste, and I hate people I adore go to waste. So yeah, if you’re told this is a really emotional movie based on a true story about devoted parents, à la Lorenzo’s Oil, then ignore those comments, don’t see this one unless you are the type of person who loves Lifetime movies, and even then, only see it if it actually ever airs on Lifetime, buying an admission ticket for it just isn’t worth it.

Grade: D+

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