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Dead Man (1995)

R  |   |  Drama, Fantasy, Western  |  10 May 1996 (USA)
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Ratings: 7.7/10 from 68,572 users   Metascore: 61/100
Reviews: 316 user | 99 critic | 19 from Metacritic.com

On the run after murdering a man, accountant William Blake encounters a strange North American man named Nobody who prepares him for his journey into the spiritual world.



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4 wins & 10 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Jimmie Ray Weeks ...
Marvin, Older Marshal
Mark Bringelson ...
Lee, Younger Marshal


Dead Man is the story of a young man's journey, both physically and spiritually, into very unfamiliar terrain. William Blake travels to the extreme western frontiers of America sometime in the 2nd half of the 19th century. Lost and badly wounded, he encounters a very odd, outcast Native American, named "Nobody", who believes Blake is actually the dead English poet of the same name. The story, with Nobody's help, leads William Blake through situations that are in turn comical and violent. Contrary to his nature, circumstances transform Blake into a hunted outlaw, a killer, and a man whose physical existence is slowly slipping away. Thrown into a world that is cruel and chaotic, his eyes are opened to the fragility that defines the realm of the living. It is as though he passes through the surface of a mirror, and emerges into a previously-unknown world that exists on the other side. Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


No one can survive becoming a legend.


Drama | Fantasy | Western

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for moments of strong violence, a graphic sex scene and some language | See all certifications »

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Release Date:

10 May 1996 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Jim Jarmusch's Dead Man  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office


$9,000,000 (estimated)


$1,069,600 (USA)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


The lines "Every night and every morn / Some to misery are born / Every morn and every night / Some are born to sweet delight" are from William Blake's poem "Auguries of Innocence". See more »


William Blake and Nobody come upon a trading post tent. When Nobody walks down the hill towards the tent, smoke from the chimney is blowing towards him, but when the camera angle changes, it's blowing away from him. See more »


[first lines]
Train Fireman: Look out the window. And doesn't this remind you of when you were in the boat, and then later than night, you were lying, looking up at the ceiling, and the water in your head was not dissimilar from the landscape, and you think to yourself, "Why is it that the landscape is moving, but the boat is still?"
See more »

Crazy Credits

This Film is Dedicated to the Memory of Dick Peiffer and Paul D. O'Brien See more »


Featured in The Magic of 'Finding Neverland' (2005) See more »


Billy Boy
Played in the saloon
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User Reviews

A profoundly spiritual film speaking to our true human nature in this world of illusion
1 November 2005 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

I decided to check this movie out as I am now studying William Blake poems in my English class. This movie is flat out brilliant. To see Jarmusch make something as pretentious as Broken Flowers is kind of shocking. The amount of symbolism and metaphor in this movie is awesome. A real tribute to the actual William Blake. If ever Blake took a quest, this was it. I knew this movie was going to be good as soon as I saw the vast list of slightly eccentric actors lined up in it. This script must have touched something deeply spiritual in all of them and I, if I were them, would have felt as if I wasn't even in the film. So many times was I moved to tears. It is its own entity. Amazing movie. I'm definitely adding it to my collection.

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