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Fight for Life (1987)

Not Rated | | Drama | TV Movie 23 March 1987
Jerry Lewis plays an Ohio optometrist who has a six-year old daughter with epilepsy. He fights to get the FDA to approve a drug (at that time only available in England) for use in the U.S.

Director:

Elliot Silverstein

Writers:

Scott Nisor (teleplay), Tom Nesi (teleplay) (as Thomas Nesi) | 1 more credit »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Jerry Lewis ... Dr. Bernard Abrams
Morgan Freeman ... Dr. Sherard
Jaclyn Bernstein ... Felice Abrams
Gerard Parkes ... Father Robert Hunt
Patty Duke ... Shirley Abrams
Barry Morse ... Dr. Whalley
James Bearden James Bearden
Robert Benson Robert Benson ... Dr. Keith
Eve Crawford Eve Crawford
Marcia Diamond Marcia Diamond
Rosemary Dunsmore
Chris Earle Chris Earle ... (as Christopher Earle)
Patricia Hamilton
Alana King
Samantha Langevin
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Storyline

Jerry Lewis plays an Ohio optometrist who has a six-year old daughter with epilepsy. He fights to get the FDA to approve a drug (at that time only available in England) for use in the U.S. Written by Greg Bulmash <greg@imdb.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

23 March 1987 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Fight for Life See more »

Filming Locations:

Toronto, Ontario, Canada

Company Credits

Production Co:

Fries Entertainment See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See full technical specs »

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User Reviews

 
Have a box of Kleenex handy when you watch this one.
23 August 2012 | by MartinHaferSee all my reviews

I did not see this film when it aired on TV back in the 80s. However, it IS available to see through Netflix--and I strongly recommend you see it...and have a box of tissues handy. It's an exceptionally well made film--one that can't help but touch your heart.

Jerry Lewis stars in this drama. As I've seen him in dramatic roles over the years (such as in "King of Comedy" and his stint on the show "Wise Guy"), I've noticed that although he's known as a comedian, I really think his forte is drama. He was brilliant in "Fight for Life"--very touching and with an honest emotional range. It's a darn shame he didn't do more roles like these.

Lewis and his wife (Patty Duke) play parents who are beside themselves with fear. It seems their young daughter has a very extreme case of epilepsy but conventional treatment won't help. As a result, the child has 15 seizures a day--and this is beginning to cause her to suffer long-term brain damage. The prognosis is horrible--and she's expected to become severely intellectually impaired if something isn't done soon. However, there is some hope--a drug that is used in Europe probably will help. BUT, it's not an FDA-approved drug, they simply cannot get it. What are they to do--let their child waste away to nothing or fight with every bit of energy within them to advocate for their child? Not surprisingly, they fight....but will it be a case of too little, too late?

This is a very touching drama--one you can't watch without it affecting you. As I said above, see this with some tissues--as it is effective but also heart-wrenching. Exceptional acting (not just by Lewis but by his supporting actors as well) and writing make this well worth your time--particularly if you have kids. See this one.


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