Movie Review: Intensive Care (2018)

November 29, 2018

Written by DanXIII

Daniel XIII; the result of an arcane ritual involving a King Diamond album, a box of Count Chocula, and a copy of Swank magazine, is a screenwriter, director, producer, actor, artist, and reviewer of fright flicks…Who hates ya baby?

Alex (Tara Macken) earns some scratch by being the live-in nurse for an elderly woman named Claire (Leslie Easterbrook); and it seems like a rather cake assignment minus changin’ an adult diaper or two. Meanwhile Claire’s estranged, and constantly down on his luck, grandson Danny (Jai Rodriguez) has reunited with Seth and Rudy (played to the hilt by Kevin Sizemore and Jose Rosete respectively), a duo of no-good-nik townies he fucked over in the past, and the trio decide to rob the old bat, with the dastardly duo doing the deed while Danny takes Alex out on a date (plus distraction sex…Danny really suffers for his machinations, eh creeps? It’s like “You dudes get dolled up in spooky masks and struggle to open that safe…I’ll take the heat off of you by getting down and dirty with this outrageously attractive woman!” That ol’ rugged cross is a hard one to bear…).
As is often the case, things go south, and Alex is held captive…and holy hell did these assholes make a huge mistake! You see, Alex is an ex-military killing machine, and when she gets pissed she gets impossibly violent…and so the game of cat and mouse begins!
Intensive Care could easily have been released in the late eighties/early nineties and been a huge VHS rental hit. You have bone-crushing action, a strong female hero, and scenery chewing bad guys all inhabiting an uncomplicated plot…in other words, some good ol’ action flick comfort food (with a sprinkle of home invasion thriller placed on top). And speaking of said “strong female hero”, good lord is Tara Macken absolutely amazing in this picture! Coming from a background as a leading stunt woman (seriously, check out the top-shelf films she’s been a part of right here), Macken is front and center in every high impact sequence of vicious violence, plus she is a solid actress as well which combines to give us a heroine that is sympathetic and a pleasure to root for! Adding to the fun are the performances of Sizemore and Rosete as the ultimate low-lifes, and Rodriguez as the eternally scheming Danny…these folks provide plenty of cranked up to 11 villainy while also serving as human punching bags for Macken!
On the downside, while the action is spectacular, it takes a while for things to really get cooking. After a fists (and feet) a-flyin’ opening sequence, it takes nearly forty minutes (out of an hour and nineteen minute run-time…including credits) to get back to the ass-kicking. Don’t get me wrong, the film is never boring…but once you get to the goods you just crave more and more!
If you dig on the oeuvre of  Cynthia Rothrock, and wondered how she would handle a home invasion scenario, then Intensive Care will surely scratch that itch…and by scratch I mean snap your bones like kindling and pulverize your face…in a good way, I assure you!



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