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Conspiracy Theory (1997)

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A man obsessed with conspiracy theories becomes a target after one of his theories turns out to be true. Unfortunately, in order to save himself, he has to figure out which theory it is.



4 wins & 1 nomination. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Cylk Cozart ...
Wilson (as Stephen Kahan)
Rod McLachlan ...
Justice Guard
Justice Guard
Justice Guard
Rich Hebert ...
Public Works Man
G.A. Aguilar ...
Cece Neber Labao ...
Finch's Secretary
Alice's Secretary


Jerry Fletcher is a man in love with a woman he observes from afar. She works for the government. Fletcher is an outspoken critic of that government. He has conspiracy theories for everything, from aliens to political assassinations. But soon, one of his theories finds itself to be accurate. But which one? Some dangerous people want him dead and the only person he trusts is that woman he loves but does not know. Written by Steve Richer <sricher@sympatico.ca>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


They knew too much See more »

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for some violence | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

8 August 1997 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

El complot  »


Box Office


$75,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$19,313,566, 10 August 1997, Wide Release

Gross USA:


Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

| |



Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?


According to Richard Donner, Mel Gibson improvised the opening scenes in which his character expounds his conspiracy theories to a succession of passengers. See more »


When Jerry is driving up to his apartment in the beginning of the movie and pushes the car backwards to park on the corner, the car moves back way too easily. If the car being pushed back has an automatic transmission, the rear wheels (or the front in a front wheel drive car) would be locked, hence causing the car to skid. If the car had a manual transmission, the last driver of the car should have placed the transmission in first gear or applied the parking brake. Either way, the car would have skidded backwards. The chances of the car being left in neutral in either situation is unlikely at best, and if so, the odds of that particular car being in neutral are very high, considering the amount of cars in Manhattan. See more »


[first lines]
Jerry Fletcher: July eighth, 1979, all the fathers of Nobel Prize winners were rounded up by United Nations military units, all right, and actually forced at gunpoint to give semen samples in little plastic jars, which are now stored below Rockefeller Center underneath the ice skating rink...
See more »

Crazy Credits

The initial Warner Bros. logo with the clouds behind is shown - the camera then pulls back to show the logo as a billboard on the side of a bus. See more »


References The Man from U.N.C.L.E. (1964) See more »


Roto-Rooter Jingle
Written by Captain Stubby and The Buccaneers
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User Reviews

A Surprisingly Good Film
23 July 2000 | by See all my reviews

Let me say immediately that I would recommend this film to almost anyone but the most literal-minded. This film will be different things to different people. It can be a macho thriller, a subtle romance, an ironic look at ourselves, or a combination of all these things. The great thing about this movie is not so much the plot, but the individual situations and scenes. What is meant to be portrayed as paranoid behaviour by Mel Gibson's character, Jerry Fletcher, becomes quite funny when the viewer recognizes his or her own self doing similar things, but in a context that is supposedly "normal." Jerry's having a padlock on his refrigerator and a combination lock on his coffee will bring a smile to the lips of anyone who has to deal with numerous computer "logons" and passwords to gain access to even the most mundane things in our computer-dominated workplaces. Likewise, the writers and director are spot on when they show poor paranoid Jerry going to separate mailboxes to post his various letters, while many of us here in the on-line world will routinely use pseudonyms, proxies, remailers, etc for the very same reason that Jerry takes his seemingly abnormal precautions, i.e., to avoid potentially prying eyes. So, who's paranoid? I thought this was very insightful. As for overt humour, perhaps my guard was down, but I laughed until tears came to my eyes when Jerry tossed off joke about a man who had only three minutes to live. Mel Gibson's delivery of the punch line was perfect. As for pathos and those human moments, scenes in which Jerry would gladly die for just a brushing kiss from his worshipped Julia Roberts might bring back memories of anyone's naive, tender years and momentarily make your heart ache. And a scene in which Jerry is unable to explain why he compulsively buys copies of the same book over and over again is very poignant, indeed. Mel Gibson put a lot of energy into what was obviously a demanding role and, as usual, Julia Roberts lights up the screen in every scene she's in. The film might be a fantasy, but it's the sort of fantasy many of us can appreciate.

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