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Bottle Rocket (1996)

R  |   |  Comedy, Crime, Drama  |  21 February 1996 (USA)
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Ratings: 7.1/10 from 51,303 users   Metascore: 65/100
Reviews: 182 user | 80 critic | 22 from Metacritic.com

Focusing on a trio of friends and their elaborate plan to pull off a simple robbery and go on the run.



(as Owen C. Wilson) ,
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Cast overview, first billed only:
Dignan (as Owen C. Wilson)
Ned Dowd ...
Dr. Nichols
Shea Fowler ...
Future Man
Brian Tenenbaum ...
H. Clay Murchison
Stacy Sinclair
Temple Nash ...
Dipak Pallana ...
Bookstore Employee
Bookstore Manager
Stephen Dignan ...
Julie Mayfield ...
Wife in Motelroom


Upon his release from a mental hospital following a nervous breakdown, the directionless Anthony joins his friend Dignan, who seems far less sane than the former. Dignan has hatched a hare-brained scheme for an as-yet-unspecified crime spree that somehow involves his former boss, the (supposedly) legendary Mr. Henry. With the help of their pathetic neighbor and pal Bob, Anthony and Dignan pull a job and hit the road, where Anthony finds love with motel maid Inez. When our boys finally hook up with Mr. Henry, the ensuing escapade turns out to be far from what anyone expected. Written by Marty Cassady <martyc@bev.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

texas | caper | motel | escapade | robbery | See All (24) »


They're not really criminals, but everybody's got to have a dream.


Comedy | Crime | Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:






Release Date:

21 February 1996 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

(O)organiserad kriminalitet  »

Box Office


$7,000,000 (estimated)


$1,040,879 (USA)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Wes Anderson, Owen Wilson, and Luke Wilson made a 13 minute B/W short film called Bottle Rocket (1994) which was first shown at the USA Film Festival in Dallas. It met with a sufficiently enthusiastic response that they took it to Sundance where it came to the attention of screenwriter L.M. Kit Carson who directed it to towards Polly Platt and James L. Brooks. It was with their intervention that the team were able to get financial backing from Columbia to expand their short into a feature film. See more »


When Bob is being beaten up, the lemonade disappears from Anthony's hand between shots. See more »


[first lines]
Anthony: Hey, Dr Nichols, I was just coming down to say goodbye...
See more »


Pachanga Diferente
Written & Performed by Rene Touzet
Courtesy of GNP Crescendo Records
By Arrangement with Ocean Park Music Group
Published by Skyview Music Corp.
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User Reviews

I normally hate Owen Wilson...
17 January 2004 | by (Los Angeles) – See all my reviews

In anything. But man was he great in this movie. I mean it was such a good performance. This movie is director Wes Anderson's (Rushmore, The Royal Tenenbaums, The Life Aquatic) feature directorial debut. It's about a group of misfit friends that decide to take up a life of crime. The group includes Anthony (Luke Wilson) just got out of the nut house and is searching for himself. Dignan (Owen Wilson, co-wrote the movie with Anderson) is the confident but bumbling ringleader who wants to be notorious but doesn't know how to execute a plan to save his life. And Bob (Robert Musgrave) the driver/look out who just wants a little recognition. The movie follows their misadventures of them robbing a bookstore, going on the lamb, Anthony falling in love with a Motel maid who instills joy back in his life, and Dignan's 'big score' that involves his former employer. The subtle humor and deliveries by the actors make the movie stand out in it's own little version comedy. The characters are losers, but lovable. You can't help but cheer them on even though what they do is illegal. I highly recommend this cool little film. It's an excellent introduction into the wonderful films of Wes Anderson.

RATING: **** out of ****

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