6.2/10
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75 user 59 critic

Mad City (1997)

PG-13 | | Crime, Drama, Thriller | 7 November 1997 (USA)
A disgruntled security guard holds a school trip group hostage, while a news reporter forms a bond with him.

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Writers:

(screenplay), (story) | 1 more credit »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Sam
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Laurie
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Lou Potts
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Mrs. Banks
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Dohlen
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Miss Rose
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CTN Junior Executive
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Dobbins
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Jenny
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Diane
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Bartholomew
Bingwa ...
Nat Jackson
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Storyline

Sam Baily, upset over losing his job, takes a natural history museum hostage. Max Brackett, journalist, is in the museum when this occurs, and gets the scoop. The story spreads nation wide, and soon it is all anyone talks about. The story itself is the news, not the reason why or the real people behind it. Written by <freckles@vivid.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

This November, the biggest hostage negotiation is about to begin See more »

Genres:

Crime | Drama | Thriller

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for depiction of a hostage situation, including violence and brief language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

7 November 1997 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

El cuarto poder  »

Box Office

Budget:

$50,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$4,649,742 (USA) (7 November 1997)

Gross:

$10,556,196 (USA) (9 January 1998)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

| |

Color:

| (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The pastor in the news montage is an actual pastor of the church where the filming took place for his brief interview. The crew was filming, he was watching and was talking with one of the assistant directors, who then invited him to appear in the movie. He had no prior acting experience. See more »

Quotes

Lou Potts: Jeez, I sent you to cover a piece of fluff, and you come back with a hostage situation.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in In the Shadow of Hollywood (2000) See more »

Soundtracks

Jenny's Garden
Written and Produced by Philippe Sarde
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User Reviews

 
Media Frenzy leads to...
25 October 1999 | by (West Coast) – See all my reviews

This movie gets off to a slow start. To be honest it doesn't build much suspense. It does, however, have a message about modern society. People have a fascination with crisis situations and media personalities feed on that fact like sharks in a frenzy. That can lead situations to escalate out of control.

Dustin Hoffman stole the show as Max Brackett. A fellow viewer couldn't believe that he was the same man that had played in Rainman. He delivers a standout performance as TV news reporter Max Brackett who is looking to inject life back into his career but at the same time retains some sense of compassion and justice. The forces battle inside him through out the film.

John Travolta was on the money but not stellar as Sam Bailey, a recently unemployed security guard on the cusp of losing everything that he owns. Sam is a bit of low watt bulb, but he is basically a good person caught up in a very bad choice and situation that runs awry of his plans. He is very distraught about his situation and popping caffiene pills to stay awake doesn't help his state of mind much either. Not one of Travolta's best but it is still good.

What a pleasure to watch Alan Alda in front of the camera again. As Kevin Hollander he is the guy that you love to hate. Hollander is Max Brackett's nemesis and antagonist. Alda easily departs from his compassionate portrayal of Dr. Haweye Pierce on TV's MASH for this one.

This isn't a perfect film but it is a good one. It will leave you thinking about the message that it has. The acting is good to great.


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