The Net (1995) - Plot Summary Poster



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  • Angela Bennett's a software engineer type who works from home and has few friends outside of cyberspace. Taking her first vacation in years, she becomes embroiled in a web of computer espionage.

  • Angela Bennett lives the life of a computer geek: she works from home as a contract employee of Cathedral Software as a software analyst, lives a reclusive life on her computer and as such has few friends or acquaintances who even know what she looks like. Even her mother, who has Alzheimer's, no longer recognizes her. Cathedral's fortunes in the computer software world are increasing with what looks to be the universally used Gatekeeper security program, which they developed. During a period when Angela is dealing with what looks to be a virus in one of Cathedral's new games, she takes a vacation to Mexico. There, she meets the suave Jack Devlin, the two who begin a romance. But Jack is not all he seems as he tries to kill her, apparently having something to do with the work issue she is facing. Angela manages to escape from Jack, but hits larger issues when slowly she realizes that Jack and the group to which he is tied, who she eventually learns are called the Praetorians, have stolen her identity, and provided her a new identity with a criminal history. As Angela tries to find anyone who can vouch for her assertion of who she really is (with most in authority not believing her story since their computer systems are protected by the fail-safe Gatekeeper program), she tries to elude Jack while trying, mostly via computer, to figure out who he is, why he is trying to kill her, and how to get her identity back.

  • Angela Bennett is a computer expert. This young and beautiful analyst is never far from a computer and modem. The only activity she has outside of computers is visiting her mother. A friend, whom she's only spoken to over the net and phone, Dale Hessman, sent her a program with a weird glitch for her to de-bug. That night, he left to meet her and was killed in a plane crash. Angela discovers secret information on the disk she has received only hours before she leaves for vacation. Her life then turns into a nightmare, her records are erased from existence and she is given a new identity, one with a police record. She struggles to find out why this has happened and who has it in for her.

  • A computer programmer stumbles upon a conspiracy, putting her life and the lives of those around her in great danger.


The synopsis below may give away important plot points.


  • Angela Bennett is a computer programmer who works from home. She keeps an extensive collection of computer viruses that she removes from her clients systems. She gets a call from her colleague, who asks her for help with a "glitch" he found in one of their clients websites. He sends Angela to the site, where she clicks on a Pi symbol and finds herself transported into the confidential databases of different government agencies. She copies the website's programming code onto a disk to research the problem after she gets home from her vacation to Mexico, which is her first vacation in years. We see her sitting on the beach in Mexico with her laptop, and a gorgeous man (Jack Devlin) strikes up a conversation with her. He gains her trust, and invites her to dinner. After dinner, he takes her for a walk on the beach, where her purse is stolen. The thief gets all of her personal information - passport, driver's license, credit cards, etc. We see that Devlin (the Praetorian agent) was the one who hired the thief to steal her purse, and he finds the confidential disk in her purse. She is very upset, so Devlin consoles her by offering her a ride in his company's boat (supposedly one of his employment perks). While on the boat, they have sex. Angela is cold, so she gets re-dressed. She goes to put on his jacket and discovers a gun. She figures out he is not whom he says he is, so she asks him what the gun is for. He replies, and she knows he is lying. They struggle, and Angela knocks him out. She then escapes from him with the disk that he stole from her, but winds up crashing into a rock and hitting her head. She ends up being knocked out for three days, and wakes up in a hospital in Mexico. The disk was damaged because it was exposed to water and sunlight. She tries to go back to the hotel, but finds she was supposedly checked out over a week ago. She has no ID, so she goes to the American Embassy and to get a copy of her Passport. She has to sign "Ruth Marx" to get the temporary Visa. Once Angela gets back to Los Angeles, her car is gone from the airport. She arrives at her home in a cab to find it empty and for sale. She seeks help from a former lover, Dr. Alan Champion, who checks her into a motel and tries to help her figure this out, even though he really does not believe her story. The Praetorians change Angela's (or from the police department's perspective, Ruth Marx's) file, framing her for theft, murder, and illegal drug use. Setting off the fire alarm at Cathedral, the computer company she works for, Angela discovers her imposter's whereabouts. She gains some time to hack into the mainframe to figure out who did all this to her. She saves all the files and details of the computer scam onto a disk, and heads off to a computer convention. She manages to send the files to the F.B.I. on a computer she borrows, plus places the virus disk into the drive. She tricks Devlin into ruining the mainframe of their own computer system. In the end, she clears her identity, gets the Praetorians arrested, and regains her normal life.

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