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Instinct
Movie Stats & Links

Starring: Cuba Gooding Jr., Donald Sutherland, Anthony Hopkins
MPAA Rated: R
Released By: Touchstone Pictures
Web Site: www.instinct-themovie.com
Kiddie Movie: Oh no, I don't think so.
Date Movie: She'll might get jumpy and hold your hand.
Gratuitous Sex: None.
Gratuitous Violence: People get killed, beat up, and put in head-locks.
Action: Some chase-type scenes in the jungle and through the airport.
Laughs: Some cute one-liners.
Memorable Scene: Anytime Caulder is trying to evalute/question Powell.
Memorable Quote: Powell to Caulder after he speaks: "Have I made your fucking day?"
Directed By: Jon Turtletaub
Produced By: Michael Taylor, Barbara Boyle

Instinct
A Movie Review

MPAA Rated - R

It's 2:04 Long

A Review by
The Dude on the Right
Cuba Gooding Jr. has a new line. No more "Show me the money!" Nope, after watching "Instinct" now it's "Everybody goes outside!" Alright, it doesn't have the ring as the "Jerry Maguire" line, and I doubt people will be coming up to Cuba now and saying "Come on, say that 'outside' thing," but "Instinct" did make me now see that Cuba is a pretty damn good actor. And that Anthony Hopkins guy isn't bad either.

In "Instinct" we've got Dr. Ethan Powell (Anthony Hopkins). He's one of those professors who is totally dedicated to his work and leaves his family in the dust. He finds himself in Africa studying gorillas and somehow disappears into the jungle. Well, after killing some poacher dudes, he's captured and instead of hung overseas, Powell gets extradited back to the U.S. and now it's time for Dr. Caulder (Cuba Gooding Jr.) to evaluate him before his hearing. Caulder is one of those kiss-ass kind of students, always working to please everyone to get ahead, and sees Powell as his chance at fame and advancement. At first he is totally happy he gets to do the evaluation, kinda a gift from his professor/mentor dude, Ben Hillard (Donald Sutherland), but then Caulder finds out that he also has to evaluate/treat the rest of the crazies (umm, I mean mentally ill), in the maximum security prison Powell is vacationing in. He's not to pleased, but keeps his end of the bargain so that he can get to treat Powell.

Well, yea, you can probably guess that a lot of this movie revolves around Dr. Caulder's transformation from the kiss-ass intern to a guy who has actual feelings, and yea, the movie does some preaching about humanity today (I almost became weepy as I was seeing the reason Powell killed those dudes in Africa), but for me most of this movie showed some great acting on many sides, Hopkins as usual, Gooding which impressed me (except for the scene where he tells Powell "Try me." It still wreaks of overacting, but that's just me), and then there's the hospital of, umm, the mentally ill. We see inside the mind of Powell, we see him twist Coulder into a human being, and we see Coulder's human being side care about what happens to the crazies he has been put in place to help. The other treat comes from the acting of the mentally ill patients. You feel a little sad for them, but love their triumphs.

"Instinct" does get a little preachy but I was able to get past that quickly and just enjoy the film. I expected not to, having read some early reviews, comparing it to "Gorillas in the Mist" and "One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest," and yea, I suppose there are similarities, but sometimes you just have to listen to the story a movie tells, take it for what it's worth, and enjoy the characters. Everyone in this film lets you do that.

So, I give "Instinct" 4 stars out of 5. It could have been a little better, and I would have preferred the movie ended with Powell just staring into space after Coulder blubbered to him how he was ready to get back in "the game," but I guess it's tough for anyone in Hollywood to leave a movie on a slight downer. Oh well.

That's it for this one! I'm The Dude on the Right!! L8R!!!

 

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