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Academy Award(R)-winning star Sean Connery (Best Supporting Actor, 1987 -- THE UNTOUCHABLES), reunites with action director John McTiernan (THE HUNT FOR RED OCTOBER, DIE HARD) for another powerful collaboration in the heroic box office smash MEDICINE MAN! Screen favorite Connery plays Dr. Robert Campbell, a brilliant but unorthodox scientist racing against time in his bold research for a cure against cancer. Set deep in the forbidding Amazon rain forest, this action-packed hit follows Campbell hot on the trail of an amazing discovery -- but the eccentric recluse soon finds himself caught in the midst of an explosive adventure! Also starring Oscar(R)-nominee Lorraine Bracco (Best Supporting Actress, 1990 -- GOODFELLAS), MEDICINE MAN delivers unmatched entertainment with its spectacular mix of breathtaking scenery, captivating performances, and thrilling, nonstop excitement!
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"Medicine Man" is the rare action/adventure film with something more than car chases and shootouts on its mind, a passionate parable of the rampant destruction of the rainforest and the miracles of nature now threatened by "progress".
Sean Connery gives one of the best, most nuanced performances of his career, almost certainly the definitive "mature" Connery role, and Lorraine Bracco is a perfect foil as the sharp-tongued but endearing "Dr. Bronx" - their conflict thoroughly understandable and its resolution none too easy.
The breathtaking beauty of the rainforest and the haunting images of the native tribes driven from their homes (or decimated by the white man's diseases) are punctuated by thrilling aerial sequences high above in the jungle canopy - "the top shelf in the pharmacological superstore".
Forget the critics. This is an almost perfectly realized film, one that just gets better with each viewing, one that stays with you long after it's over.
For Connery fans, I also recommend one of his early (and nearly forgotten) films, "The Hill".
I watch this over and over, because it is a contextual relief, not embedded in American culture, only referred to as a distant reality. It reminds us too that we, as well as other cultures, can live in homeostatis, essentially disease-free, using local herbs and plants that target more specifically, and don't have the side effects of petrochemically-based precriptions. This is something we did for thousands of years, before 'well meaning' Christians sought to save the world, concomittently making off with all the gold and resources, and leaving behind disease, as well as forcing the people to speak a different langugage. Too, there's the ominous tone of the encroachment and final engulgment and destruction brought my modern man, clearly driven home in the last segment of the film.
A harbinger of things to come if we keep our current pace. That's the final message. I recommend this film to everyone.
It features an intruiging storyline with a great hook (the cure for cancer), luscious exteriors and two likable leads in the perenial Sean Connery and the earthy Lorraine Bracco. Ok, so a lot of critics harpoon Lorraine's NY twang but for me that adds to the tension as she "finds herself" in the jungle with Sean's able assistance.
Then there's the local indigenous community, great ensemble work and a decent message about the consequences of screwing up Mother Nature.
Even if all that's not your cuppa, it's a good, interesting film, not brilliant, but enjoyable and a must have in my library. Something you pull out once a year , settle back and bask in for a couple of hours.
If all that doesnt' tweak you interest, Sean's brilliant as ever and he's worth a look anytime.