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Harrison Bergeron (1995)

In a distant future, egalitarianism has created a truly equal state. The cost? The sacrifice of everything great about humankind. The question: is peace worth the price?



4 nominations. See more awards »


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Cast overview, first billed only:
President McCloskey
Charlie (of 'Chat with Charlie')
John Klaxon
Dr. Eisenstock
Peter Boretski ...
David Calderisi ...
Commissioner Benson
Hayden Christensen ...
Cindy Cook ...
Roger Dunn ...
Ms. Newbound
Hal Eisen ...
TV Announcer - San Quentin


"All men are not created equal. It is the purpose of the Government to make them so." This is the premise of the Showtime film adaption of Kurt Vonnegut's futuristic short story Harrison Bergeron. The film centers around a young man (Harrison) who is smarter than his peers, and is not affected by the usual "Handicapping" which is used to train all Americans so everyone is of equal intelligence. Written by Glenn Kurtzrock <glennk@pegasus.rutgers.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Welcome to the future. It's a no-brainer.


Comedy | Sci-Fi

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language, and for some sexuality and violence | See all certifications »


Official Sites:



Release Date:

13 August 1995 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Kurt Vonnegut's Harrison Bergeron  »

Filming Locations:


Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Cast members Marc Marut and Marilyn Smith were together in another movie, the TV movie Goosebumps: Welcome to Dead House. See more »


John Klaxon: Can you imagine how I must feel, knowing that I'm striving to create a world in which no Beethoven will ever be born? But it has to be, not just because of some words in a constitution. It has to be.
See more »


Features Steamboat Bill, Jr. (1928) See more »


Symphony No. 9 in D Major
by Ludwig van Beethoven
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User Reviews

Drastically Different, but Beautifully the Same
17 November 2003 | by (Here. Now.) – See all my reviews

I read the Kurt Vonnegut short story "Harrison Bergeron" in the ninth grade, and in the tenth grade we tore it apart from beginning to end. I loved that short story; I found it fascinating, the idea of a civilization where equality exists in its base form, and yet nothing is right. Then I passed by this movie during one of my many continuing stints in a Hollywood video store. I raised my eyebrows in surprise, then furrowed them in disgust, and passed on. You see, book/story-turned-film adaptations and I do not have a pleasant history. But eventually, I broke down. What the hell?

I was dazzled immediately. Of course, the story Harrison Bergeron, as compared to Sean Astin, is as I said, Drastically Different (with capital letters included). However, he acts the role of the confused Harrison wonderfully. The film is nothing like the short story - the only things they have in common are the name and the base concept. But what the filmakers did with that base concept is extraordinary, very much deserving of the 10/10 stars I rated it with. You cannot argue with a film that answers all of your questions that the book merely skimmed upon, and yet remains true to the story. All of the actors were amazing, and played their roles with amazing vigor. The film was homely; you could connect with these people and these places. It struck me as Oscar-deserving, and it was made for television! Please, if you have read the story and are wary of this picture, don't be. I was, but I broke down, and I'll never regret it. And if you haven't read the story, watch the movie anyway. You'll get it right from the humorous beginning to a near tear-jerker ending.

Thanks for making a film adaptation that I, for one, could enjoy.

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