Up 53 this week

Sleepers (1996)

R  |   |  Crime, Drama, Thriller  |  18 October 1996 (USA)
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 7.5/10 from 147,664 users   Metascore: 49/100
Reviews: 249 user | 69 critic | 18 from Metacritic.com

After a prank goes disastrously wrong, a group of boys are sent to a detention center where they are brutalized; over 10 years later, they get their chance for revenge.



(book), (screenplay)
Watch Trailer
0Check in

Watch Now

From $2.99 on Amazon Video

Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 1 win & 4 nominations. See more awards »



Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Drama | Fantasy | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

Death, who takes the form of a young man, asks a media mogul to act as a guide to teach him about life on Earth and in the process he falls in love with his guide's daughter.

Director: Martin Brest
Stars: Brad Pitt, Anthony Hopkins, Claire Forlani
Adventure | Biography | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

True story of Heinrich Harrer, an Austrian mountain climber who became friends with the Dalai Lama at the time of China's takeover of Tibet.

Director: Jean-Jacques Annaud
Stars: Brad Pitt, David Thewlis, BD Wong
Ronin (1998)
Action | Adventure | Crime
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

A freelancing former US intelligence agent tries to track down a mysterious package that is wanted by both the Irish and the Russians.

Director: John Frankenheimer
Stars: Robert De Niro, Jean Reno, Natascha McElhone
Drama | Romance | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

Epic tale of three brothers and their father living in the remote wilderness of 1900s USA and how their lives are affected by nature, history, war, love and betrayal.

Director: Edward Zwick
Stars: Brad Pitt, Anthony Hopkins, Aidan Quinn
The Mexican (2001)
Adventure | Comedy | Crime
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

A man tries to transport an ancient gun called The Mexican, believed to carry a curse, back across the border, while his girlfriend pressures him to give up his criminal ways.

Director: Gore Verbinski
Stars: Brad Pitt, Julia Roberts, James Gandolfini
The Score (2001)
Action | Crime | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

An aging thief hopes to retire and live off his ill-gotten wealth when a young kid convinces him into doing one last heist.

Director: Frank Oz
Stars: Robert De Niro, Edward Norton, Marlon Brando
Action | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

A police officer uncovers the real identity of his house-guest, an I.R.A. terrorist in hiding.

Director: Alan J. Pakula
Stars: Harrison Ford, Brad Pitt, Margaret Colin
Spy Game (2001)
Action | Crime | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

Retiring CIA agent Nathan Muir recalls his training of Tom Bishop while working against agency politics to free him from his Chinese captors.

Director: Tony Scott
Stars: Robert Redford, Brad Pitt, Catherine McCormack
A Bronx Tale (1993)
Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

A father becomes worried when a local gangster befriends his son in the Bronx in the 1960s.

Director: Robert De Niro
Stars: Robert De Niro, Chazz Palminteri, Lillo Brancato
Cape Fear (1991)
Crime | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

A convicted rapist, released from prison after serving a fourteen-year sentence, stalks the family of the lawyer who originally defended him.

Director: Martin Scorsese
Stars: Robert De Niro, Nick Nolte, Jessica Lange
Drama | Fantasy | Horror
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

A vampire tells his epic life story: love, betrayal, loneliness, and hunger.

Director: Neil Jordan
Stars: Brad Pitt, Tom Cruise, Antonio Banderas
Analyze This (1999)
Comedy | Crime
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

A comedy about a psychiatrist whose number one-patient is an insecure mob boss.

Director: Harold Ramis
Stars: Robert De Niro, Billy Crystal, Lisa Kudrow


Cast overview, first billed only:
Geoffrey Wigdor ...


Four boys growing up in Hell's Kitchen play a prank that leads to an old man getting hurt. Sentenced to no less than one year in the Wilkenson Center in upstate New York, the four friends are changed by the beating, humiliation and sexual abuse by the guards sworn to protect them. Thirteen years later and a chance meeting lead to a chance for revenge against the Wilkenson Center and the guards. Written by Albert@SaveKoalas.com

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Four friends have made a mistake that will change their lives forever. See more »


Crime | Drama | Thriller

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language, graphic violence and two scenes of strong sexual content | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:



Official Sites:



Release Date:

18 October 1996 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Los hijos de la calle  »

Box Office


$44,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$12,305,745 (USA) (18 October 1996)


$53,300,852 (USA) (24 January 1997)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

| |

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Kevin Bacon never actually met his co-stars Robert De Niro and Dustin Hoffman during the production because of the logistics of the shoot. See more »


The bulbs in the streetlights in NYC would have been mercury, not yellow sodium in the mid 1960s, and many NYC streets would have still had original cast iron lamps. See more »


[first lines]
Lorenzo: This is a true story about friendship that runs deeper than blood. This is my story and that of the only three friends in my life that truely mattered. Two of them were killers who never made it past the age of 30. The other's a non-practicing attorney living with the pain of his past - too afraid to let it go, never confronting its horror. I'm the only one who can speak for them, and the children we were.
See more »


References Little Caesar (1931) See more »


All Alone
Performed by Doris Day
Written by Irving Berlin
Courtesy of Arwin Productions
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

The Sleeper of 1996
27 November 2000 | by (Boston, MA) – See all my reviews

Sleeper(1996) is a deeply emotional and brilliant film that was overlooked in 1996. It deals with the past and how events from the past can be instrumential in shaping the present. The movie was very controversial due to the subject matter. I believe that one reason that Sleepers(1996) didn't get the praise it deserved is the film deals with things that were already present in Mean Streets(1973) and Once Upon a Time in America(1984). The first half of the feature reminds me a lot of the flash back sequences from Once Upon a Time in America(1984). Brad Pitt gives what I see as the best performance of his life. What I also like about Sleepers(1996) is that it puts together two of the best actors of their genreation in Dustin Hoffman and Robert De Niro.

70 of 88 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
What exactly are those 'football ticket stumps' that the father shows? scotty999
A question that may be answered in the book risky-russian
question about ralph fuergeson arunsah
I didn't understand the prosecution oliverfennell
Best child actor? thalia_poet
Question about the defense lawyer Redman75
Discuss Sleepers (1996) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page