Beyond Forgiveness (1995)

Combining the worst of a Thomas Ian Griffith movie (the presence of Thomas Ian Griffith) with the best of a really bad Steven Seagal movie (free trip to Poland), Beyond Forgiveness (or the equally generic Blood Of The Innocent title it is also known by) manages to hit some of the elements of lamer action films (the illegal harvesting of human organs storyline), but also gives you a dose of the helicopter-oriented stunts that immediately save any film from its status as “just another annoying Thomas Ian Griffith movie starring the annoying Thomas Ian Griffith.”

Like another crappy Thomas Ian Griffith (TIG) movie (Excessive Force), Beyond Forgiveness has TIG playing a Chicago cop. But with one important difference. In Excessive Force, he was a bad boy cop who had a really bad girl mane of hair. Beyond Forgiveness though shows that he is maturing as an actor since his hair is really short and going grey!

That’s not the only difference though. In Beyond Forgiveness he actually only spends enough time in Chicago to get himself a motive to go over to Poland for some standard issue revenge. (And to take advantage of favorable Eastern European film tax breaks.)

His brother is also a cop and he gets himself killed the night before his wedding when he asks a guy to move his car up about six feet so that he can leave in his own car. Unfortunately, the guy in the car is mixed up in a black market human organ operation and as you can imagine, he’s not going to move his car one freaking inch! Because he is a bad guy! And is mixed up in selling organs!

So his friends shoot TIG’s bro down in the street! Right in front of TIG! (If it was me and I had a choice of moving my car up a few feet or having the smug TIG in my face trying to shoot me for the next 90 minutes, I would probably drive all the way around the block!)

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TIG gets information that the man responsible for the killing is Polish and presumably gets more information that the killer has already gone back over to Poland, so TIG uses his bereavement leave to go on a “vacation” to Poland. And it’s the perfect cover story because the cop TIG plays in this movie is Polish!

Any of us who have ever have gone overseas on a revenge mission know that the first order business is to hook up with a friendly local cop. This helps to provide a buffer with the unfriendly local cop who is the friendly local cop’s superior.

It also helps get our hero some local intel on the hotties and baddies he will undoubtedly run into. Like the sexy surgeon who works for the evil surgeon. A sexy surgeon who is just happens to be the daughter of an official who is in cahoots with the evil surgeon because he needs a new heart! A guy like TIG probably only needs to know the “sexy surgeon” part though.

The evil surgeon is played by Rutger Hauer and he does exactly the sort of things you would expect a refined maniac with a degree from medical school to do. He challenges TIG to some friendly fencing at a party which of course TIG is also an expert in, like most Polish Chicago police officers are.

He also gives speeches justifying what he does as well as acknowledge that he makes a nice living doing it. And when he captures TIG, he doesn’t just put a bullet in his head like any normal criminal would, but straps TIG to an operating table, applies a little local anesthetic and starts trying to remove TIG’s guts!

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The sexy surgeon doesn’t really have much involvement other than to say “oh yeah, they’re probably doing all the organ harvesting at the mental hospital just outside town.” And to do some really hideous dancing at a nightclub.

There is also a scene of grab ass between her and TIG that you will need to fast forward through in order to avoid needing to purchase a new brain from some Polish black market organization. It is a testament to TIG’s manliness that the sex scene occurs immediately after he accuses her of being one of the organ harvesters! Sometimes being a stud means saying sorry with your crotch!

TIG turns out to be way too effective in the revenge department though since he manages to get his revenge half way through the movie! The film is then forced to involve TIG in the rescue of a kidnapped child which luckily also happens to bring down the organ harvesters.

His involvement made no sense from a story standpoint since he could have just turned the information over to the police, but from an action standpoint it made all sorts of sense since it meant storming the mental hospital, hanging by one foot from Rutger’s helicopter before dumping a grenade he just happened to be carrying into a vent on its side and then dropping hundreds of feet through the air into the water below!

While TIG is his typically sour and off-putting self throughout, the Polish aspect of things allows him to do stuff like push a rack of sausages on a bad guy, thus giving the film a literal meatiness that other TIG productions lack.

© 2013 MonsterHunter

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