Beyond the Call

1996

Drama

41
IMDb Rating 6 10 124

Synopsis


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October 12, 2020

Director

Cast

Arliss Howard as Keith O'Brien
David Strathairn as Russell Cates
Dov Tiefenbach as Mark's Friend
Sissy Spacek as Pam O'Brien
720p.WEB 1080p.WEB
924.49 MB
1280*720
English 2.0
R
23.976 fps
101 min
P/S N/A / N/A
1.68 GB
1920×1080
English 2.0
R
23.976 fps
101 min
P/S N/A / N/A

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by bob-422 1 / 10 / 10

Reinforces the myth of the damaged Vietnam vet

Sissy Spacek and the others put on fine performances in this cheap production from a maudlin and unbelievable script. The husband of a cop-killer's sweetheart is able to visit the convict on death row the night before the execution? Give me a break! Sissy doesn't buy her ex-boyfriend's guilt, but does nothing to try to right such a terrible situation? Please. The real problem, though is that this made-for-tv formula flick is another example of Hollywood's trampling of the image of Vietnam veterans. The "damaged-vet-ticking-time-bomb" stereotype is not only an easy cliché, it's also a gross overstatement of the facts. No denying some veterans of Vietnam -- as of all wars -- suffered psychological effects, but when has Hollywood portrayed the 'Nam veteran as anything but a broken, emotionally troubled pariah? Movies like "Beyond the Call" contribute to the general public perception that Vietnam veterans are on the whole dysfunctional -- suicidal, alcoholic, barely able to hang on to their sanity. It's not enough that the cop-killer is a damaged Viet vet but -- surprise, surprise -- Sissy's own husband (the only character who doubts the boyfriends "Vietnam-made-him-do-it" excuse) carries his own war demons. The movie closes with Hubby curled up on the floor, crying his eyes out, comforted by Sissy the Strong. Another ticking time bomb has exploded. I guess all of us Vietnam veterans will eventually have nervous breakdowns or take refuge in a bottle. Me, I think I'll have a drink.

Reviewed by baker-9 7 / 10 / 10

Performances Outshine Mediocre Script

"Beyond The Call" is a good example of how strong, committed actors can get mileage out of a script that is both hackneyed and occasionally unbelievable. Sissy Spacek and the terrific David Strathairn are both in top form as a psychologically damaged Vietnam veteran on death row for the killing of a policeman, and the woman who tries to get him to plea for clemency and finds out that there's more to the "killing" than meets the eye. Arliss Howard is also fine as her increasingly jealous husband, a Vietnam vet himself who has put much emotional energy keeping his war-related emotions under control, and feels nothing but contempt for a fellow vet who becomes a convicted criminal because he can't do the same. Yet this husband isn't quite the same by the time the film is over. Despite these performances, the script is generally predictable and many of the scenes between Spacek and Strathairn would be mawkish in lesser hands. But these two are so attuned to each other as performers that you are moved nonetheless. The once big false note is a scene between Strathairn and Howard that may be necessary to bring about the desired changes in Howard's character, but it's completely unbelievable.

Reviewed by OJT 7 / 10 / 10

Well played death row drama

Actor and director Tony Bill has directed this story which tell another tragic Vietnam veteran story. Today a bit contrived, maybe, but in 1996 quite actual. It still is. War time veterans with psychological problems are coming out of any war. Middle aged Pam learns that her childhood sweetheart, Russel, a man which couldn't hurt a fly, is imprisoned and waiting on death row after killing a policeman. She can't understand why, and goes to visit him, and sons learn that he didn't do what he is accused for. She engages in the case, and this soon affects her life and her marriage. Her husband is a Vietnam vet himself, and not at all with ease with it. Sissy Spacek plays Pam, and David Strathairn plays their roles with great poise, and adds to the films greatness. Arliss Howard starts off like an unimportant guy in the beginning, but soon he is doing just as great as the others. The film hits on several levels, and is almost like a stage play. It could have been great on stage with a couple if good actors. And it's turned out to be a good film as well. Dark and bleak, yet filmed with bright colors as well, like a fresh nineties film, it balances between a film noir and prison movie. The film uses flashbacks when it comes to her child hood memories, to underline that Russ was a nice guy back then. It's strong on emotions, and gets you really in the end. A drama you won't forget. Watch this seven times before you go watch the highly overrated "Dead man walking".

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