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A homicide detective and an anthropologist try to destroy a South American lizard-like god, who's on a people eating rampage in a Chicago museum.



(novel), (novel) | 4 more credits »
4 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Dr. Ann Cuthbert
Det. Hollingsworth
Dr. Greg Lee
Tom Parkinson
Robert Lesser ...
Mayor Robert Owen
The Mayor's Wife
Lewis Van Bergen ...
John Whitney
Mrs. Blaisedale
Mr. Blaisedale
Dr. Zwiezic


A researcher at Chicago's Natural History Museum returns from South America with some crates containing his findings. When the crates arrive at the museum without the owner there appears to be very little inside. However, police discover gruesome murders on the cargo ship that brought the crates to the US and then another murder in the museum itself. Investigating the murders is Lt. Vincent D'Agosta who enlists the help of Dr. Margo Green at the museum - she has taken an interest in the contents of her colleague's crates. Unknown to both there is a large creature roaming the museum which is gearing itself up for a benefit reception which the city's mayor is to attend. Written by Rob Hartill

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


The Next Evolution In Terror. See more »

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for monster violence and gore, and for language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:




| | | |


Release Date:

10 January 1997 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Relic  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office


$40,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$9,064,143 (USA) (10 January 1997)


$33,927,476 (USA) (9 May 1997)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:



Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


One of the sound effects is a floppy disk drive access sound from an Apple Macintosh computer (not the Silicon Graphics computers). See more »


In the book by Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child, the monster has been in the museum's subbasement for around seven years, making the lair filled with either partially or fully decomposed skeletons completely plausible. However, in the movie they change the duration to only six weeks. The lair they find in the movie with tons of skeletons doesn't connect with the time it took for them to become that decomposed. See more »


[first lines]
[Dr. Whitney sits around the fire with the Zenzera tribe, who then hand Dr. Whitney a drink from the boiling pot over the fire]
John Whitney: [Dr. Whitney takes a drink before coughing, when one of the tribe members crawls towards him wearing some sort of beastly outfit] Oh, my God! The Kothoga.
[Dr. Whitney moans in fear, then begins uncontrollably screaming when the tribe member crawls up to him and hisses]
See more »


Featured in Flashback (2000) See more »


Written by Joseph Haydn (as F.J. Haydn)
Performed by Kodaly Quartet
Courtesy of Naxos of America
By Arrangement with Source/Q
See more »

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User Reviews

My Favorite monster movie.
21 July 2004 | by (Azores, Portugal) – See all my reviews

This one is my favorite of all monster movies. It has the perfect violence and gore. As the monster itself. Before I bought this movie I checked out some comments at IMDb, and they where pretty good. So I spent my savings on it, and when I got home I saw it alone at night. I jumped a few times, specially on the see where we see for the first time the monster attacking. The story is awesome and imaginative, like the ancient relic and the lost tribe that makes a drink with some leaves that further in the film we see that those leaves carry a red fungus that contain lots of different animal hormones. He drinks the drink, and starts to feel strange, and later he transforms into a creature that needs those leaves with the fungus to survive. If he doesn't has the leaves he rips off peoples heads and eats its hipotalamus(part of the brain)that contain the same hormones. Then the monster goes to the coal tunnels and reaches the museum, and strange murders happen in the museum. The special efx are good as so the mechanical beast. Tom Sizemore has a good role playing detective "Vincent D'Agosta", so as Penelope Ann Miller playing Biologist Margo Green. Both acting and dialogue is very good. And I truly recommend this one if you are a "monster" movie lover like me.

I give this one 9 stars. Enjoy it if you dare see this movie.

18 of 24 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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