7.7/10
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Primal Fear (1996)

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2:28 | Trailer

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An altar boy is accused of murdering a priest, and the truth is buried several layers deep.

Director:

Writers:

(novel), (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
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Popularity
908 ( 221)
Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 10 wins & 10 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Dr. Molly Arrington
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Bud Yancy
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Tommy Goodman
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Joey Pinero
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Abel Stenner
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Martinez
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Archbishop Rushman
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Naomi Chance
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Alex
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Jack Connerman
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Storyline

Courtroom thriller about a slick, hotshot lawyer who takes the seemingly unwinnable case of a young altar boy accused of murdering an eminent catholic priest. Written by Jonathan Broxton <j.w.broxton@sheffield.ac.uk>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Don't believe everything you see... See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for brief grisly violence, pervasive strong language and a sex scene | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

|

Release Date:

3 April 1996 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Iskonski strah  »

Box Office

Budget:

$30,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$293,515 (USA) (26 July 1996)

Gross:

$56,059,267 (USA) (16 August 1996)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The music, which became the theme to TNT's Southland (2009) television cop drama series, Canção Do Mar, by Frederico de Brito and Ferrer Trindade, performed by Dulce Pontes, can be briefly heard in this movie. See more »

Goofs

When Aaron pushes Martin Vail against the wall in prison you can see that the wall bends, showing that the wall wasn't made out of bricks or any other hard material. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Martin Vail: On my first day of law school, my professor says two things. First was; "From this day forward, when your mother tells you she loves you, get a second opinion."
Jack Connerman: [chuckles] And?
Martin Vail: "If you want justice, go to a whorehouse. If you wanna get fucked, go to court."
See more »

Connections

Referenced in In Bruges (2008) See more »

Soundtracks

Lacrimosa
from Requiem
by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (as W.A. Mozart)
Performed by Wiener Sängerknaben (as Wiener Sängerknaben)
Courtesy of Capriccio
by arrangement with Source/Q
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Edward Norton Shines
23 September 2006 | by (utah) – See all my reviews

In this strong, twisting court room crime drama thriller, a young Edward Norton shines with this performance that makes the movie a strong, unsettling movie. The dynamic tension between Richard Gere and Laura Linney lends to the underlying swirling dance of political and emotional turmoil that lies beneath the surface of District Attorney and high-profile attorney Gere. While by today's standards (2006) the storyline is now pretty typical, it retains a resonance because of the plot and storyline as well as the acting. Still, the edges of the movie are almost too polished. Some of the technical matters overlooked. Alfre Woodard has a credible role as the courtroom judge and Frances McDormand provides a decent hand as a psychologist (though this key role was a bit weak in comparison to the rest of the movie in terms of the crucial nature that it plays). Gere's tangled relationship with his own team is also fascinating to watch though again a bit torn and tattled with a few lose ends but the supporting cast does well. Overall, this is a solid courtroom crime drama with a nice ripping ending. Eight out of Ten Stars.


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