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A borderline personality disordered defense worker frustrated with the various flaws he sees in society, begins to psychotically and violently lash out against them.

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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...
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Sandra
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Surplus Store Owner
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D-Fens' Mother
Joey Hope Singer ...
Adele (Beth's Child)
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Guy on Freeway
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Mr. Lee
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Captain Yardley
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Detective Lydecker
Steve Park ...
Detective Brian
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Detective Jones
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Detective Keene
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Storyline

On the day of his daughter's birthday, William "D-Fens" Foster is trying to get home of his estranged ex-wife to see her daughter. He has a breakdown and leaves his car in a traffic jam in Los Angeles and decides to walk. Then he goes to a convenience store and tries to get some changes for a phone call but the Korean owner does not change his money. The unstable William breaks apart the shop with a baseball bat and goes to an isolated place to drink a coke. Two gangsters threaten him and he reacts hitting them with the bat. William continues walking and stops at a phone booth. The gangsters hunt him down with their gang and shoot him but crash their car. William goes nuts and takes their gym bag with weapons proceeding in his journey of rage against injustice. Meanwhile Sergeant Martin Prendergast that is working on his last day before retirement is following the wave of crimes and believes that the responsible is the same man but the other detectives do not pay attention to him. Written by Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

A Tale Of Urban Reality See more »

Genres:

Drama | Thriller

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for violence and strong language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

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Language:

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Release Date:

26 February 1993 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Un día de furia  »

Box Office

Budget:

$25,000,000 (estimated)

Gross:

$40,903,593 (USA)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Lois Smith plays Michael Douglas's mother in this movie and his secretary in 'Fatal Attraction' six years earlier. See more »

Goofs

In the store when Bill calls his wife and makes the Apollo 13 reference, the spacecraft was actually prior to the point of no return when the service module exploded. The reason why the spacecraft couldn't return early was because was because the service module near the main engine was damaged and they did not want to risk lighting the engine up for fear that the ship may explode. A free-return trajectory was advised and they returned safely. See more »

Quotes

Bill Foster: [to The Golfer that is having a heart attack] Yeah. And now you're gonna die, wearing that stupid little hat. How does it feel?
See more »

Crazy Credits

"London Bridge is Falling Down" plays briefly at the very end of the credits. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Mystery Science Theater 3000: Laserblast (1996) See more »

Soundtracks

THE STRIPPER
Written by David Rose
Performed by David Rose and His Orchestra
Courtesy of POLYGRAM SPECIAL MARKETS
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

An Unusual Performance for Douglas...But a Good One!!!
2 April 2004 | by (Brooklyn, NY) – See all my reviews

Falling Down (1993)

Tagged as `the adventures of an ordinary man at war with the everyday world,' Joel Schumacher's `Falling Down' tells the tragic tale of William Foster aka D-FENS, a now unemployed defense worker who finds himself trapped on a hot summer day in bumper-to-bumper Los Angeles traffic. Having been pushed past the brink of sanity, Foster loses it and storms out of his car, walking around town and trying desperately to see his little daughter for her birthday, a daughter who is untouchable because of a court order against him by his estranged wife. Along the way, Foster will run across character types we've all come across: the 'war veteran' bum who is really just a lowlife looking to score some quick cash, an irate Korean grocery store owner, a homophobic neo-nazi army retail store owner, a crusty elitist country club golf player, super friendly fast food workers, young Hispanic thugs, and so forth. And each one will chip away at what remains of his patience and tolerance for stupidity, fueling a rampage.

Up against this anti-hero is Prendergast, a veteran cop who has felt many of the same pains as Foster, but who serves as sort of a foil to him. Foster has lost everything, and while Prendergast has lost quite a bit (his wife is a basketcase, his little daughter died years ago under mysterious circumstances), he still retains some optimism, calmness, and dignity. As Prendergast, who is on his last day on the job, begins to put together the pieces of the mysterious crime spree plaguing the city (he seems to be the only one smart enough to figure out it's all the doing of one man!), it pits him in an inevitable confrontation between him and Foster.

Michael Douglas, playing Foster / D-FENS plays an incredibly complex character. On the one hand, you know much of what he does is so wrong, but at the same time there's immense satisfaction at seeing him lash out at those deserving of it. And while he tries to stay calm, he finds himself constantly provoked by those who have 'wronged society.' In fact, many of the things he does could so easily have been avoided if the 'victims' were not so positively despicable. You can't help but feel at the end of the day, when Foster gets his due, that he's, in some small way, made Los Angeles a better place despite the carnage he's unleashed.

And this is perhaps what is so strange about the movie. There seems to be no clear message. Who was right? Who was wrong? It becomes a very blurry line over the approximately 2 hours of the movie's run. I've seen it now several times and I still can't give any definitive answer. Perhaps this is a strength, that different people will view this movie in different ways. Some will see this as the story of a noble, decent man who modern society has beaten down and crushed, and who desperately tries to struggle against the tyranny and betrayal. Others will see Foster as a lunatic who needed to be put down. No one, I think, will find that Foster doesn't warrant some sympathy.

Personally, I think Foster got the wrong end of the stick. His wife's anger and fear of him seems somewhat unwarranted, and though it is clear that Foster (and not just society itself) has brought many of his problems upon his own head, he is tired and angry and rightfully resentful at the course his life has taken. He feels he has nothing to live for, so he takes it out on anyone who crosses his path. I recommend this movie because the performances are all-around great, it delivers a solid cast, and as the portrayal of one man's journey down the path of madness, few have done better.

Grade: A-


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