Bringing Out the Dead

Watch Bringing Out the Dead

"Saving someone's life is like falling in love."
  • R
  • 1999
  • 2 hr 1 min
  • 6.8  (75,800)
  • 72

Bringing Out the Dead is an intense and emotional drama film released in 1999, directed by Martin Scorsese and starring Nicolas Cage, Patricia Arquette, and John Goodman. The movie is based on the novel by Joe Connelly and takes place over three consecutive graveyard shifts of a New York City ambulance driver. Frank Pierce (Nicolas Cage), a burnt-out paramedic who has experienced a series of traumatic events on the job, struggles to maintain his sanity while working in late 1990s New York City. Within the span of three days, Frank's life becomes more chaotic and disorienting as he encounters a series of difficult and often harrowing situations while driving an ambulance throughout the city.

Frank's world is filled with overworked and exhausted colleagues, callous emergency room staff, and an array of patients in dire straits. Among these patients is a young woman named Mary (Patricia Arquette), who Frank sees regularly due to her addiction to drugs and alcohol. The relationship between Frank and Mary takes on a deeper dimension as Frank becomes increasingly obsessed with saving her life.

As the film progresses, Frank endures an emotional journey through the city's gritty and dangerous streets, haunted by the ghosts of those he has failed to save. His escalating frustration and increasing detachment from reality culminate in a series of intense and violent encounters, as he struggles to find a way to continue functioning in the face of overwhelming stress and trauma.

Throughout the film, Cage delivers an intense and convincing performance as the exhausted and struggling paramedic. His portrayal captures Frank's sense of profound despair and confusion, as he grapples with the futility of his role in a broken system. Arquette also delivers a compelling performance as Mary, imbuing her character with a raw vulnerability and a sense of hopelessness in the face of her addiction.

The film's supporting cast is also noteworthy, with John Goodman playing Frank's fellow ambulance driver and close friend, Marcus, and Ving Rhames as a religious former gang member turned paramedic. The dynamics between these characters highlight the camaraderie and support system developed through the shared experience of facing life and death on a daily basis.

The cinematography of the film is also notable, with Scorsese and his longtime collaborator, cinematographer Robert Richardson, using a variety of techniques to capture the frenetic pace and chaotic energy of New York City at night. The film is filled with dynamic camera angles, frenzied editing, and intense lighting to create a sense of disorientation and emotional turmoil.

In conclusion, Bringing Out the Dead is a powerful and thought-provoking work that explores the fragility of life and the impact of trauma on those who work in the medical profession. The film's gritty realism and raw emotion create a powerful experience that is both challenging and rewarding to watch.

Bringing Out the Dead is a 1999 drama with a runtime of 2 hours and 1 minute. It has received mostly positive reviews from critics and viewers, who have given it an IMDb score of 6.8 and a MetaScore of 72.

Bringing Out the Dead
Where to Watch Bringing Out the Dead
Bringing Out the Dead is available to watch free on Kanopy. It's also available to stream, download and buy on demand at The Roku Channel, Apple TV, Amazon, Google Play and Vudu. Some platforms allow you to rent Bringing Out the Dead for a limited time or purchase the movie and download it to your device.
  • Release Date
  • MPAA Rating
  • Runtime
    2 hr 1 min
  • Language
  • IMDB Rating
    6.8  (75,800)
  • Metascore