7.6/10
72,185
190 user 76 critic

Dead Man Walking (1995)

A nun, while comforting a convicted killer on death row, empathizes with both the killer and his victim's families.

Director:

Writers:

(book) (as Sister Helen Prejean C.S.J.),
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Popularity
3,750 ( 473)

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Won 1 Oscar. Another 20 wins & 19 nominations. See more awards »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Helen's Mother
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Chaplain Farley
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Sister Colleen
Barton Heyman ...
Captain Beliveau
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Sgt. Neal Trapp
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Warden Hartman
Ray Aranha ...
Luis Montoya
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Guy Gilardi
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Storyline

A convicted murderer on Death Row and the nun who befriends him. Through the portrayal of finely drawn characters and their interactions as the days, hours, and minutes tick down to the condemned man's execution, powerful emotions are unleashed. While Matthew Poncelet and Sister Prejean desperately try to gain a stay of execution from the governor or the courts, scenes are intercut from the brutal crime, gradually revealing the truth about the events that transpired. In addition to her temporal help, the nun also tries to reach out spiritually and assist as a guide to salvation. Written by Tad Dibbern <DIBBERN_D@a1.mscf.upenn.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Crime | Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for a depiction of a rape and murder | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

|

Language:

Release Date:

2 February 1996 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

La dernière marche  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Budget:

$11,000,000 (estimated)

Gross:

$39,025,000 (USA)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Tim Robbins: [family] Cast includes director's common law wife Susan Sarandon, common law stepdaughter Eva Amurri Martino, father Gil Robbins (Bishop Norwich), mother Mary Robbins (aide to the governor), sister Adele Robbins (nurse), and son Jack Henry Robbins (opossum kid) and Miles Robbins (boy in church). His brother, David Robbins, composed the soundtrack. See more »

Goofs

In some scenes where Helen is talking to Matthew through the grate, her face is pressed up against the wires but in reverse angle shots it is not. See more »

Quotes

Matthew Poncelet: I was just fucking chicken.
See more »

Crazy Credits

This Film Was Edited On Old Fashioned Machines. This credit was inspired by John Ottman, editor of 'The Usual Suspects'. Ottman had wanted to put "edited on a piece of s*** Steenbeck" at the end of his movie, but settled for the more subtle "Edited on film". Tim Robbins heard about this, and decided to put his own variation of the line on the credits of 'Dead Man Walking.' See more »

Connections

Referenced in How I Met Your Mother: Bachelor Party (2007) See more »

Soundtracks

Be Not Afraid
Performed by Susan Sarandon
Written by Bob Dufford
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
Powerful
3 October 1999 | by (Sweden) – See all my reviews

"Dead Man Walking" is one of the most powerful movies I have ever seen. I find it hard to believe that anyone, after having seen the movie, could feel indifferent about the film or its message. Tim Robbins does not try to impose his ideas and beliefs on the viewers, but manages to make a film that are in most ways sympathetic to both views on the death penalty -- whether it is right to murder a murderer or not. I have always known where I stand in this question, even as a child, and this movie -- despite the fact that it does not really take any sides -- made me even surer in my conviction that it can never be right to murder *anyone*.

Sean Penn is absolutely brilliant in his portrayal of Matthew Poncelet, his nomination for an Academy Award was very well-deserved. Even if Nicolas Cage does a great job in "Leaving Las Vegas", I would have been happier if Penn had won the award. Susan Sarandon is also brilliant and she deserved the Academy Award she won. And Tim Robbins certainly deserves the vote I have given this film: 9/10!


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