Though this would-be chiller was shot in Canada in 1994 as EXQUISITE TENDERNESS, its ultimate U.S. video title proves much more reflective of both its subject matter and its banal bluntness.
Dr. Theresa McCann (Isabel Glasser) goes to work at a hospital where Dr. Roger Stein (Malcolm McDowell) is working on an abdominal implant intended to render dialysis obsolete. When a test ape dies and one of Stein's patients goes into renal failure, McCann has the patient moved into dialysis,
where she's poisoned by a mysterious doctor. Suspended as a result of this incident, McCann investigates with the help of Dr. Benjamin Hendricks (James Remar), and discovers that the killer is Dr. Julian Matar (Sean Haberle), who was himself suspended three years before when McCann uncovered his
After killing Stein and threatening McCann, Matar is badly injured during his arrest and taken to another hospital. But a serum he has concocted from pituitary fluid allows him to heal any wound almost instantaneously. He escapes and returns to McCann's hospital, where he kills several patients
and administrator Dr. Ed Mittlesbay (Charles Dance). Apparently shot dead while threatening McCann, Matar revives himself once more and murders Hendricks at McCann's apartment before she kills him once and for all.
During this movie's production, its makers insisted on representing it as a psychological medical thriller, which was no doubt how they were able to lure its high-profile cast. But despite the actors' best efforts, this remains little more than a slasher schlocker with delusions of grandeur. Just
because the script offers a scientific rationale for its killer's unstoppability doesn't make it any less of a cliche. The film wallows in numerous other exploitation standards, including graphic gore, an over-insistent musical score, and a laughably gratuitous (and surprisingly explicit) love
scene between Glasser and Remar.
The plotting is lopsided, the dialogue in Patrick Cirillo's script is awkward, and director Carl Schenkel's attempts to class things up (like setting one of the movie's many unconvincing expository dialogue scenes in a restaurant where white whales swim behind glass walls) seem misguided,
particularly given the crass manner in which he stages the horrific setpieces. (Graphic violence, extensive nudity, sexual situations, extreme profanity.)
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- Released: 1994
- Rating: R
- Review: Though this would-be chiller was shot in Canada in 1994 as EXQUISITE TENDERNESS, its ultimate U.S. video title proves much more reflective of both its subject matter and its banal bluntness. Dr. Theresa McCann (Isabel Glasser) goes to work at a hospital w… (more)