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Dark City (1998)

R  |   |  Drama, Fantasy, Sci-Fi  |  27 February 1998 (USA)
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Ratings: 7.7/10 from 149,110 users   Metascore: 66/100
Reviews: 616 user | 222 critic | 23 from Metacritic.com

A man struggles with memories of his past, including a wife he cannot remember, in a nightmarish world with no sun and run by beings with telekinetic powers who seek the souls of humans.



(story), (screenplay), 2 more credits »
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9 wins & 14 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Karl Harris
Frank Gallacher ...
Hotel Manager / Vendor
Justin Monjo ...
Taxi Driver
Mr. Rain


John Murdoch awakens alone in a strange hotel to find that he has lost his memory and is wanted for a series of brutal and bizarre murders. While trying to piece together his past, he stumbles upon a fiendish underworld controlled by a group of beings known as The Strangers who possess the ability to put people to sleep and alter the city and its inhabitants. Now Murdoch must find a way to stop them before they take control of his mind and destroy him. Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


A world where the night never ends. Where man has no past. And humanity has no future. See more »

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for violent images and some sexuality | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:






Release Date:

27 February 1998 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Dark City  »

Box Office


$27,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$5,576,953 (USA) (27 February 1998)


£848,615 (UK) (19 June 1998)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


| (director's cut)

Sound Mix:



Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


(at around 10 mins) The music which Inspector Bumstead is playing on his accordion in his very first scene in the movie is a song written in 1939 by a Polish-Jewish composer Jerzy Petersburski which was originally called "Mala blekitna chusteczka" ("Little Blue Handkerchief"). The lyrics were later translated (with slight differences) to many languages and it became especially popular in Soviet WWII era under the title "Siniy Platochek" ("Blue scarf"). The song lyrics tell about an unhappy, lonely man who wanders aimlessly around the world thinking about his lost love which is gone forever. His only memento of his beloved one is the blue handkerchief from the title. As the movie is about our memories, the song actually fits the movie mood quite well. See more »


(at around 1h 8 mins) When the doctor is pointing a gun at Murdoch and trying to give him the injection containing his memories, it is daylight outside through the windows behind them, but there is supposed to be no daylight. See more »


[first lines]
Dr. Schreber: [voiceover] First there was darkness. Then came the strangers. They were a race as old as time itself. They had mastered the ultimate technology. The ability to alter physical reality by will alone. They called this ability "Tuning". But they were dying. Their civilization was in decline, and so they abandoned their world seeking a cure for their own mortality. Their endless journey brought them to a small, blue world in the farthest corner of the galaxy. Our world. Here they ...
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Referenced in Midnight Screenings: Priest/Bridesmaids (2011) See more »


Le Chale Bleu
Written by François Perchat (as Francois Perchat)
Sung by Anita Kelsey
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

creepy, heart warming and fantastical
16 September 2009 | by (United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

simply wonderful on every level. A matrix meets Truman show if you will. Remarkably the film works despite its weird. wonderful and uncomfortable story line. Genuinely disturbing, as interesting as any murder mystery and beautiful atmosphere with art deco, film noir, and night on elm street under belly.

At first you will be tempted to draw comparisons with the matrix and at other times the mind wonders and the ghostly tall men enter our dreams, but as the film progresses the human heart begins to take centre stage particularly in the characters of the two police chiefs as well as the central figure of John Murdoch. All in all a cascading and multi-dimensional cinematic delight that left me feeling unsettled and warm at the same time.

watch it.

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Was Dark City Unmarketable? amadaca
Dark City of NO dark people perpetualsoloist
One of the worstly aged movie in the history of cinema? poisonborz
Suggest similar Movies stormerstime
Which version? LivingDeath
Discontinued in UK/Europe jarand-fredheim
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