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View All The English Surgeon News
All Critics (18)
| Top Critics (12)
| Fresh (16)
| Rotten (2)
Some will feel privileged to see human drama and an aspect of life not often seen on the movie screen. Others will feel haunted by it and wish they never saw it. For sure, few will leave the film unaffected.
Like Marsh, the filmmaker has taken a sort of triage approach to telling the tale, with near-perfect pacing as he moves between Marsh, the patients, and Marsh's wonderful Ukrainian colleague, neurosurgeon Igor Kurilets.
[A] superb documentary.
Why see such a difficult film? For the same reason Smith made it: There is great beauty in watching one heroic soul insist that he can improve upon a cruel and complex world.
[Director] Smith seems intent on turning Marsh into a folk hero. That's fine, I suppose, although it would have been informative to take a closer look at Ukraine's medical nightmare -- its causes and its prognosis.
Henry Marsh is a British brain surgeon whose humanity and talent with power drills make him an uncommonly enthralling linchpin.
A provocative, taut and compelling documentary that's concurrently disturbing and profoundly moving.
As with Marsh, the state of Ukrainian medicine, and his topic's underlying issues of morality and mercy, director Smith merely presents them in all their heartrending complexity.
Good to know that there are still doctors around who do not spend all their waking hours thinking of $$$. (OK, maybe only in England, but that's a start.)
An edge-of-your seat documentary from Geoffrey Smith about a British physician who has done pro bono work in Ukraine for 15 years.
This multi-award winning doco is a riveting insight into something that goes on every day within reach of us all, but out of sight and mind.
While the film leaves this bundle of post-Soviet contradictions packed up, its vérité depiction of the surgeon's life surpasses the likes of ER.
While doctors don't make house calls anymore, Dr. James Marsh, a neurosurgeon, travels to the Ukraine to see patients in "The English Surgeon," a documentary that is more emotional than informative.(Admittedly, I now know more about brain surgery than I really wanted to know.) In focusing on a single patient who has to travel 400 kilometers to Kiev to see Dr. Marsh about his brain tumor that has been causing epileptic seizures, the movie seeks to shed light on the dreadful state of healthcare in the former Soviet republic. Marsh who has been going there since 1992 is told that his contributions are only a drop in the bucket but it soon becomes clear that relatively minor improvements can do wonders, especially concerning early detection, as he donates any old equipment which is not nailed down. Even while providing hope, he still agonizes over an old case involving a child. At the same time, he admits neurosurgery is tricky in trying to figure out when exactly to operate.
As real as it gets. Henry Marsh visits the Ukraine and discovers that they could use his area of expertise. That commences frequent journies to treat the worst of the worst brain conditions. A heart braking example of how arbitrary bad fortune is.
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