Coma

Coma

4.2 4
Director: Michael Crichton

Cast: Geneviève Bujold, Michael Douglas, Elizabeth Ashley

     
 

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A feisty, feminist intern uncovers a medical conspiracy in this icy thriller about mysterious goings-on at Boston Memorial Hospital. When her best friend and aerobics partner, Nancy Greenly (Lois Chiles), emerges in a vegetative state from a routine abortion, Dr. Susan Wheeler (Genevieve Bujold) does some digging and discovers an overabundance of anesthesia-induced… See more details below

Overview

A feisty, feminist intern uncovers a medical conspiracy in this icy thriller about mysterious goings-on at Boston Memorial Hospital. When her best friend and aerobics partner, Nancy Greenly (Lois Chiles), emerges in a vegetative state from a routine abortion, Dr. Susan Wheeler (Genevieve Bujold) does some digging and discovers an overabundance of anesthesia-induced comas among otherwise healthy young patients. The male authority figures who challenge Susan's technically illegal tampering with medical records include her boss, Dr. Harris (Richard Widmark); the chief anesthesiologist, Dr. George (Rip Torn); and even her boyfriend, Dr. Mark Bellows (Michael Douglas), who doesn't want Susan's shenanigans to get in the way of his shot at chief resident. As Susan continues her crusade, the paper trail leads to the Jefferson Institute, a mysterious, experimental facility in which vegetative patients are stored en masse, suspended from the ceiling by wires threaded through their long bones, in order to reduce the cost of long-term care. A shadowy assailant begins to stalk Susan just as she uncovers the link between the Jefferson Institute and the comas at Boston Memorial, setting the stage for climactic suspense scenes involving morgues, malpractice and endless institutional corridors. Writer/director Michael Crichton adapted his second feature film from Robin Cook's bestseller of the same name. Tom Selleck, who would star in Crichton's Runaway several years later, appears briefly in Coma as another victim of lethal anesthesia.

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Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide - Brian J. Dillard
One of medical expert/author/filmmaker Michael Crichton's stronger directorial efforts, this taut '70s conspiracy thriller features a button-pushing premise, lots of disturbing imagery, and an appealing heroine played by the sexy, cerebral Genevieve Bujold. The dogmatism of Coma's feminist themes comes directly from Robin Cook's source novel; the fact that the first victim is a sexy woman seeking an illicit abortion is about as subtle as the film's gender politics get. In one of her biggest hits ever, though, Bujold manages to overcome such stridency by simply playing what she plays best: a woman of steely self-determination, strong intellect, and unselfconscious sensuality. Meanwhile, Rip Torn, Richard Widmark, and Michael Douglas provide an early Hollywood example of pervasive male villainy. Douglas' ambitious, arrogant doctor helped build the template for his enduringly sleazy screen persona. One intriguing lapse in the feisty-heroine-vs.-old-boy-network plot comes in the form of Elizabeth Ashley's crisp, sinister medical administrator; the veteran stage actress turns her small role into the very picture of institutional dread. Although Crichton's script proves more capable of suggesting its conspiracy than explaining it, the writer/director does build an effectively escalating sense of dread. A better visual stylist -- for example, David Cronenberg, who must have had Coma in mind when he cast Bujold in Dead Ringers -- could have turned this material into something even more insidiously disturbing. Nevertheless, Coma is an effective thriller whose vision of medicine corrupted by profit is as chilling and relevant as it is heavy-handed.

Product Details

Release Date:
11/09/2010
UPC:
0883929155446
Original Release:
1978
Rating:
PG
Source:
Warner Home Video
Region Code:
1
Presentation:
[Full Frame, Wide Screen]
Time:
1:53:00
Sales rank:
18,881

Special Features

Closed Caption

Related Subjects

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Geneviève Bujold Dr. Susan Wheeler
Michael Douglas Dr. Mark Bellows
Elizabeth Ashley Mrs. Emerson
Rip Torn Dr. George
Richard Widmark Dr. Harris
Lois Chiles Nancy Greenly
Lance Le Gault Vince
Hari (Harry) Rhodes Dr. Morelind
Gary Barton Computer Technician
Frank Downing Kelly
Richard Doyle Jim
Alan Haufrect Dr. Marcus
Michael MacRae Chief Resident
Betty McGuire Nurse
Tom Selleck Sean Murphy
Charles Siebert Dr. Goodman
William Wintersole Lab Technician
Sarina Grant Woman in Elevator
Ernest Anderson First Doctor
Harry Basch Second Doctor
Maury Cooper Doctor
Joni Palmer Dance Instructor
Joanna Kerns Diane
Kay Cole Sally
Benny Rubin Mr. Schwartz
David Hollander Jimmy
Dick Balduzzi First Maintenance Man
Gary Bisig Second Maintenance Man
Mike Lally Security Man
Duane Tucker First Man in Shower
Paul Ryan First Technician
David McKnight Man in Elevator
Robert Burton Pathology Resident #1
Ed Harris Pathology Resident #2
Joe Bratcher Surgical Resident
Martin Speer Surgical Resident
Roger Newman Surgical Resident
Lois Walden Nurse
Tom Borut Dr. Cowans
Philip G. Brooks Dr. Richards
Kurt Andon First Cop
Wyatt Johnson Second Cop
John Widlock Norman
Del Hinkley Second Man in Shower
Michael Mann Second Technician
Gerald Benston Anesthetist
Paul Davidson Surgical Resident
Amentha Dymally Nurse
Sharron Frame Nurse
Sue Bugden Nurse
Susie Luner Nurse
Gerald Berns Security Guard
Edward C. Higgins Security guard #2
Don Torres Actor

Technical Credits
Michael Crichton Director,Screenwriter
Albert Brenner Production Designer
David Bretherton Editor
Sam Christensen Casting
Joe Day Special Effects
Martin Erlichman Producer
Jerry Goldsmith Score Composer
Bill Griffith Sound/Sound Designer
Ronald R. Grow Asst. Director
Gerald Hirschfeld Cinematographer
Victor J. Kemper Cinematographer
Michael J. Kohut Sound/Sound Designer
Yvonne Kubis Costumes/Costume Designer
Harry V. Lojewski Musical Direction/Supervision,Sound/Sound Designer
Eddie Marks Costumes/Costume Designer
Wiliam L. McCaughey Sound/Sound Designer
William McGarry Asst. Director
John Riordan Sound Editor
Joyce Robinson Casting
Aaron Rochin Sound/Sound Designer
Don Schoenfeld Makeup
Rick Simpson Set Decoration/Design
Ernie Smith Special Effects

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Scene Index

Disc #1 -- Coma
1. Scene 1 [1:59]
2. Scene 2 [5:13]
3. Scene 3 [2:08]
4. Scene 4 [6:32]
5. Scene 5 [5:06]
6. Scene 6 [3:24]
7. Scene 7 [3:30]
8. Scene 8 [3:30]
9. Scene 9 [1:43]
10. Scene 10 [2:54]
11. Scene 11 [3:07]
12. Scene 12 [1:42]
13. Scene 13 [3:46]
14. Scene 14 [4:18]
15. Scene 15 [3:03]
16. Scene 16 [2:02]
17. Scene 17 [2:10]
18. Scene 18 [1:49]
19. Scene 19 [1:28]
20. Scene 20 [1:43]
21. Scene 21 [5:31]
22. Scene 22 [2:58]
23. Scene 23 [3:53]
24. Scene 24 [2:54]
25. Scene 25 [3:23]
26. Scene 26 [5:05]
27. Scene 27 [3:40]
28. Scene 28 [3:29]
29. Scene 29 [2:16]
30. Scene 30 [6:00]
31. Scene 31 [3:07]
32. Scene 32 [5:52]
33. Scene 33 [:57]
34. Scene 34 [2:24]

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