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Raising Cain (1992)

R  |   |  Crime, Drama, Thriller  |  7 August 1992 (USA)
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Ratings: 5.9/10 from 9,361 users  
Reviews: 76 user | 26 critic

Jenny Nix, wife of eminent child psychologist Carter Nix, becomes increasingly concerned about her husband's seemingly obsessive concern over the upbringing of their daughter. Her own ... See full summary »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Teri Austin ...
Barton Heyman ...
Amanda Pombo ...
Kathleen Callan ...
Ed Hooks ...
Jim Johnson ...
Night Clerk


Jenny Nix, wife of eminent child psychologist Carter Nix, becomes increasingly concerned about her husband's seemingly obsessive concern over the upbringing of their daughter. Her own adulterous affair with an old flame, however, causes her to neglect her motherly duties until a spate of local kidnapings forces her to accept the possibility that he may be trying to recreate the twisted mind-control experiments of his discreditied psychologist father. Written by Ross Horsley <>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


When Jenny cheated on her husband, he didn't just leave... He split. See more »


Crime | Drama | Thriller

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for sexuality, language and terror violence | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:






Release Date:

7 August 1992 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Demente  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office


$12,000,000 (estimated)


$21,370,057 (USA)

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Third of five collaborations [to date, September 2015] of actor Gregg Henry and director Brian De Palma. The films are Scarface (1983), Body Double (1984), Raising Cain (1992), The Black Dahlia (2006), and Femme Fatale (2002). See more »


Carter: I know what you're going to do! It's a bad thing and I'm going to tell!
See more »


References Psycho (1960) See more »


Morning (from 'Peer Gynt')
by Edvard Grieg
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

Muddled,derivative exercise in De Palmary with flashes of interest
30 March 2005 | by See all my reviews

Brian De Palma seems to generally make two kinds of films,those aimed at a mass audience {such as The Untouchables,Carrie,Carlito's Way,Mission Impossible} and those he makes to please himself and real fans {such as Femme Fatale,Blow Out,Body Double,Snake Eyes}. Dressed to Kill is somewhere in between. Raising Cain is definitely in the second category. Unfortunately,even to fans of De Palma it will probably disappoint. It has points of interest,but overall is something of a mess,in fact it has a hurried,unfinished feel to it,as if it was made in a rush.

Somewhat toning down the expected sex and violence {although there is a disturbing element of child abuse},De Palma shows much of the film from the point of view of his psycho,which is interesting and allows John Lithgow full rein to have fun with his role{s}. Several times we are shown something,only for the film to double back and show that something else actually happened. This may reflect the fractured state of it's protagonist but may just be downright infuriating to some.

Disappointedly,Raising Cain only has one great De Palma set piece near the end,leaving one feeling somewhat short changed for thrills. The film also has little of the visual inventiveness one expects from De Palma,in fact for much of the time it's visually dull,although at least there's a lush Pino Donnaggio score to hear. Along the way De Palma peppers the film with film homages,some of them surprising {Ghost Story,Peeping Tom,Tenebrae} and some of them from his own {Dressed to Kill,Sisters},but there's not enough originality to counter them.

Raising Cain is basically a director having fun. Unfortunately,it may be difficult for viewers to join in this time.

7 of 11 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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