5.7/10
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61 user 23 critic

The Trigger Effect (1996)

A blackout leaves those affected to consider what is necessary, what is legal, and what is questionable, in order to survive in a predatory environment.

Director:

Writers:

(television series Connections),
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
Joe
...
Raymond
...
Steph
...
Gary
Tori Kristiansen ...
Sarah
Tyra Kristiansen ...
Sarah
...
Johnny
Edhem Barker ...
Trendy German Guy
...
Tripping Guy
...
Hand Holding Guy
Monica Torres ...
Hand Holding Girl
...
Double Date Guy
Kerri Vickers ...
Double Date Girl
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Storyline

How tenuous is man's hold on civilization when survival becomes an issue? When the lights go out and stay out for several days, suburbanites Matthew and Annie learn the hard way that man is "by nature" a predatory creature. Matthew's long-time friend, Joe, happens by on the second day and a rivalry between the two friends simmers as Annie cares for her sick baby. When rumors of looting spread through the neighborhood, the two men buy a shotgun for protection but Annie throws it in the pool. Later, that same night, Joe hears a prowler downstairs and awakens Matthew. They chase the stranger from the house and out into the street where a neighbor shoots him to death. No longer safe in their own home, they decide to drive to Annie's parents some 500 miles away. Before they reach their destination, more trouble comes their way when they stop to siphon gas from an abandoned car and discover the driver in the back seat... Is this what is meant by "man's inhumanity to man?" Written by Mark Fleetwood <mfleetwo@mail.coin.missouri.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

When Nothing Works, Anything Goes.

Genres:

Drama | Thriller

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

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

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

30 August 1996 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Der große Stromausfall - Eine Stadt im Ausnahmezustand  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Budget:

$8,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$1,887,791 (USA) (30 August 1996)

Gross:

$3,594,848 (USA) (27 September 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

Another source of inspiration for this movie came from the first episode of the television series, Connections (1978), hosted by a co-Writer of this movie, James Burke. The episode is called Connections: The Trigger Effect (1978). See more »

Goofs

When Matthew walks from the hospital to the pharmacist to steal the prescription for the baby, the trolley camera and the guy pulling it are reflected in the shop window. See more »

Quotes

Joe: The Martians have landed. They want our women.
See more »

Connections

References The Twilight Zone (1959) See more »

Soundtracks

Danger Tension
Written by Ib Glindemann (uncredited)
From 1968 Version of "Night of the Living Dead"
Courtesy of Ole Georg / Euroscreen Music
See more »

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User Reviews

Great idea, very VERY poorly executed
23 February 2004 | by (Sydney, Australia) – See all my reviews

I was one of the people who ended up "hating" this movie and wishing it weren't so. As others have said, it's an "important" concept - how would YOU behave in this oh-too-probably situation, but it was so poorly executed. All of the characters in this movie were sooooooo unpleasant, so unlikeable. Are all middle-class Americans really like this? Somehow I doubt it. With a good director and better actors - and let's face it, has Elisabeth Shue ever done any movie where she gets to keep her clothes on - this could have been much better than the 'C' grade crap that it ultimately became.


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