7.6/10
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Falling Down (1993)

An unemployed 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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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
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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 (Joey Hope Singer) birthday, William "D-Fens" Foster (Michael Douglas) is trying to get to his estranged ex-wife's (Barbara Hershey) house to see his daughter. He has a breakdown and leaves his car in a traffic jam in Los Angeles and decides to walk. Along the way he stops at a convenience store and tries to get some change for a phone call but the owner, Mister Lee (Michael Paul Chan), does not give him change. This destabilizes William who then breaks apart the shop with a baseball bat and goes to an isolated place to drink a coke. Two gangsters (Agustin Rodriguez & Eddie Frias) threaten him and he reacts by hitting them with the bat. D-FENS continues walking and stops at a phone booth. The gangsters hunt him down with their gang and shoot at 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 (Robert Duvall), who is working on his last ... Written by Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

A Tale Of Urban Reality See more »

Genres:

Crime | 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)
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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

When the homeless man (John Fleck) tells D-Fens (Michael Douglas) that he drove down from Santa Barbara, audiences in Santa Barbara theaters cheered at the mention of their town. See more »

Goofs

In the burger bar, D-Fens holds a burger in a wrapper. When he turns around to show it to the other customers the wrapper is missing. See more »

Quotes

Nick: [1:05:07] Give me your other hand.
Bill Foster: I can't.
Nick: Why not?
Bill Foster: Gravity.
Nick: Gravity? What the fuck does that mean?
Bill Foster: I'll fall down.
[Nick kick's Bill's knee, making him fall down]
See more »

Crazy Credits

The role of Vondie Curtis-Hall, who plays the man protesting the bank, is credited as "Not Economically Viable Man." See more »

Connections

References Apocalypse Now (1979) See more »

Soundtracks

I DIDN'T SLIP, I WASN'T PUSHED, I FELL
Written by Eddie Pola and George Wyle
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

Excellent Observations of Society
20 January 2004 | by (College Park, Maryland) – See all my reviews

"Falling Down" is a film that intends to point out the many quirks and oddities of modern urban society. It succeeds in doing so, but one must look carefully. Each situation Bill Foster (Michael Douglas) faces is one that most people can relate to. However, unlike most people he decides to "fight the system" and wage war on the everyday annoyances that we all face. Foster is a People's Champion. To illustrate this, most people who watch this film naturally pull for him and see him as being a hero, mostly out of pure sympathy. However, at the end of the day, Foster is still "the bad guy" for going against the societal grain. Most viewers will find this upsetting or even unfair, considering that he fought back against many criminals and unjust forces.

Where Falling Down fails at times is during the scenes where it attempts to do too many things at once. The bits of humor throughout the film are mostly derived from over-the-top scenes, and at times Foster's actions seem cheesy and unrealistic. The fact that the film is two stories in one (Foster and Prendergast) provides a good contrast because the viewer gets to see both sides of the story. On one hand, we see an ordinary family man going bezerk (but in a way most of us can understand) and on the other hand we see a cop who believes Foster is a complete psychopath. Only the audience knows the truth. The film could have done without some of the lame subplots such as Duvall's marriage, even though those scenes illustrate his perception of being "weak" or "whipped". The film sets out to do a lot at once, which is quite necessary to create a thorough storyline, but at times doesn't come out right on film.

One scene that I have always found moving and powerful is the scene where Bill Foster sees the man who is "Not Economically Viable" protesting outside of the bank that denied him a loan. As everyone on the busy street goes about their business and ignores this man, Foster (and the viewer) are focused directly on him. Foster obviously sympathizes with this poor, hardworking man who is also being stepped on by society. As the man is escorted away in the police car he looks directly at Foster and says "don't forget me". In a gesture of sympathy and appreciation, he nods to him. The two characters share a connection. It is especially important to notice the symbolism of this scene. Both men are wearing the exact same outfits: a white short-sleeved dress shirt, black tie and black pants. They are on the opposite sides of the street. When they look at each other, even though they are white and black, it is as though they are looking into a mirror and seeing the same thing: a victim of society.

Overall, a slightly sad story that tries to do a whole lot, succeeds in most of it and provides lots of entertainment. A good storyline and an excellent observation of modern society.


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