Final Analysis Reviews
The mid-1990s were the genre's pinnacle, several trying to imitate the successes of "Fatal Attraction" and "Basic Instinct" most prominently. An early example comes in the shape of "Final Analysis," released just a month before the former. Neurotic and malicious, it has moments of insight, but eventually falls into the trap of over-plotting; it is too fond of the plot twist, forgetting that viewers like to gasp but not so much so that breathing becomes a difficulty. It commences with aptitude only to fly off the rails sometime after Plot Twist #1 is revealed - after that, it becomes an eye-roll of a film, passing itself off as more of a wannabe steamer than a worthy one.
In "Final Analysis," Richard Gere plays Dr. Isaac Barr, a respected psychiatrist currently treating Diana Baylor (Uma Thurman), a young woman suffering from horrific recurring nightmares. It is a case not unlike many that he's already undergone, so things get much more interesting when he is introduced to Diana's sister, Heather Evans (Kim Basinger), a comely blonde trapped in a marriage to a self-loathing gangster (Eric Roberts). It takes Isaac and Heather only a few moments to pursue the considerable chemistry that rests between them, and, before long, a hot and heavy affair consumes their lives.
But, unbeknownst to Isaac, Heather suffers from a disease known as "pathological intoxication," through which a mere sip of alcohol can cause the victim to go completely berserk (we experience it firsthand through one laughable scene in which Heather has a drop of red wine at a fancy restaurant and ends up having a screaming fit that ends in a tackle). So when her husband is found bludgeoned to death, she becomes the prime suspect. But will her instability keep her out of the slammer?
I recall writing a review of Pedro Almodóvar's "Live Flesh" a while back where I discussed the succession of thrillers who try too hard to be sexy and thrilling and dramatic and stylish, but end up awkwardly attempting to combine all characteristics or unevenly spotlighting aspects of each. But I praised "Live Flesh" for doing it all with flashy subtlety - "Final Analysis," unfortunately, is the kind of film that falls under the aforementioned poor succession. It's more risible and self-serious than sensual and suspenseful, certainly under the impression that heavy doses of twists, of turns, equals a complex and smart thriller. But it doesn't feel like a slick game of oneupmanship on the part of its director, Phil Joanou; it feels like a weak Hitchcock tribute. Never are we convinced of what it has to provide, both stylistically (which is sometimes juicily noiry) and story wise.
The leading actors, possessing star personas that would make their inclusion in any film something to behold, seem stranded in a movie dressed up with no place to go. Gere is on auto-pilot, hero 101, if you will, as the film's leading man - his character is thinly written, without much of a personality to make us root for him. Basinger assures us that she's a worthy leading lady early on, but her performance later descends into camp so campy that I'd go so far as to say that she, plain and simply, misfires (but try reading her lines, committing the actions of her character - how effective would you be?). Only Thurman and Roberts are worthy of our time, she a would-be victim with a lot of tricks up her sleeve, he hammy and noticeably masochistic.
But "Final Analysis" is a misstep of a movie, a bad reflection of cinematic trends of the time without the heat and entertainment value of its better counterparts. With all the talent involved, it's hard to see what necessarily went wrong - and yet, it's easy, knowing that confidence can be a dangerous animal. A sure thing can't always be so sure.
A decent suspense drama with more than a element of Hitchcock about it. The first half hour drags a little but once it gets going it improves, but don't expect too much excitement here.
(1992) Final Analysis
Starring and executive produced by Richard Gere as a shrink Dr. Isaac Barr verbally helping patient Diana Baylor (Uma Thurman). She then convinces him to see her sister since she's just as troubled as much as she is and her name is Diana Baylor played by Kim Basinger. Diane also supposed to have a rare disorder called 'pathological alcohol intoxicator' where if they were to consume any alcohol that they would go into either lapse or physical rage and at the same time forgetting everything they had done. And of course Barr played by Gere, becomes infatuated with Diane and starts to have 'a conflict of interest' by affairs with her even though she is still married to sleaze ball Jimmy Evans (Eric Roberts).
Although, there aren't any cringing moments, much of the people who were killed deserved to be killed which somehow confuses the audience on who to root for since it's 'pathological alcohol intoxicator' side effects are used so pointlessly as if the Gere character is witnessing this too which the ending contradicts the first half of the movie.
2 out of 4 stars
Liked the plot, the actors and the filming locations.