6.9/10
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119 user 46 critic

The Ref (1994)

A cat burglar is forced to take a bickering, dysfunctional family hostage on Christmas Eve.

Director:

Writers:

(story), (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
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From $2.99 (SD) on Amazon Video

ON DISC
1 win & 1 nomination. See more awards »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Gus
...
...
...
...
...
Richard Bright ...
Murray
...
...
Gary
Phillip Nicoll ...
John
Ellie Raab ...
Mary
...
George
...
Steve
...
Phil
Herbie Ade ...
Bartender
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Storyline

Denis Leary plays an unfortunate cat burglar, who is abandonded by his partner in the middle of a heist, and is forced to take an irritating Connecticut couple (Kevin Spacey, Judy Davis) hostage. He soon finds that he took more than he bargained for when the couple's blackmailing son and despicable in-laws step into the picture. Before long they're driving him nuts with their petty bickering and family problems. The only way for him to survive is to be their referee and resolve their differences, before he can be nabbed by the police. Written by Nick D. <ndoherty@imt.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

He's taken them hostage. They're driving him nuts. See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Crime | Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

11 March 1994 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Egy híján túsz  »

Box Office

Budget:

$11,000,000 (estimated)

Gross:

$11,439,193 (USA)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

|

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

When this was released originally in the UK it was called Hostile Hostages. See more »

Goofs

The candle headpieces burn down faster at some times than at others. See more »

Quotes

Gus: Sit down, Connie.
Connie Chasseur: Excuse me, but I am not one of your patients.
Gus: You're gonna be somebody's patient if you don't get your ass back down in that chair.
John Chasseur: Wow!
Gus: I swear to God, you hit that kid one more time and I will stik that pig's head right up your ass!
Connie Chasseur: Gary, are you gonna let him talk to me like that?
Gary Chasseur: Well, he is a doctor.
See more »

Connections

Featured in WatchMojo: Top 10 Alternative Christmas Movies (2014) See more »

Soundtracks

The Holly & The Ivy
Traditional
Arranged by Richard Harvey
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User Reviews

 
Lloyd and Lester
12 January 2005 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Have you noticed? Lloyd, Kevin Spacey's character in "The Ref" is closely related to Lester, Kevin Spacey's character in "American Beauty" if you see both movies, back to back, you'll notice the astonishing similarities between the two. Twins? Maybe. If they are, or were, poor Lester, a lot of things will become immediately clear. To start with, he had Glynis Johns for a mother. Miss Jones creates such a frighteningly funny portrait of a castrating mother that Lester's emasculation is perfectly explained. Not to mention their choice of spouses, time bombs Judi Davis and Annette Bening This little piece of trivia will add, to the considerable pleasures of this delightful and underrated Ted Demme's dark fairy tale. The opening at the marriage counselor's office is just superb, I can see it endlessly, it never fails to make me laugh. Kevin Spacey and Judi Davis are a couple part Edward Albee part Terence Rattigan. They are priceless. Dennis Leary's energy is contagious and relentless. His best part to date. The clunky sub plot involving their son and, what it appears, like a hurried ending, doesn't spoil the fun. The writing by the brilliant Richard LaGravenesse and Marie Weiss is pure joy. Ideal to see with a bunch of friends.


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