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Instinct (1999)

 -  Drama | Thriller  -  4 June 1999 (USA)
6.5
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Ratings: 6.5/10 from 23,623 users   Metascore: 43/100
Reviews: 227 user | 101 critic | 23 from Metacritic.com

When a noted anthropologist who left society to live in the jungle is imprisoned for murder, it's up to young psychiatrist to get through to him.

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Title: Instinct (1999)

Instinct (1999) on IMDb 6.5/10

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Cast

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Thomas Q. Morris ...
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Paul Bates ...
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Kurt Smildsin ...
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Tracey Ellis ...
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Storyline

Nearly two years after having gone amiss in Africa, renowned anthropologist Dr. Ethan Powell is caught committing a crime and subsequently imprisoned in a Florida mental institution, where aspiring psychiatrist Dr. Theo Calder takes over his important case. Dr. Powell, who has been with a group of gorillas during all that time, is not talking at all and seems to be living in a dreamworld. Very slowly, Dr. Calder manages to reach Ethan Powell and starts finding out why Ethan killed two of the poachers. Yet Theo's case is not just about why the murders have happened, but also about how Dr. Powell became the being he is in the first place. With Ethan's silence broken, Theo is introduced into a world beyond common human comprehension: The true nature of being. He learns that mankind's control of everything is a mere illusion and that the true values of existence can't be found so easily. Ethan changes Theo's view of things forever. Written by Julian Reischl <julianreischl@mac.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Nothing is more savage than civilization. See more »

Genres:

Drama | Thriller

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for some intense violent behavior | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

4 June 1999 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Ishmael  »

Box Office

Budget:

$55,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

£147,559 (UK) (17 September 1999)

Gross:

£147,559 (UK) (17 September 1999)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

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Color:

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Sean Connery was originally offered the role of Ethan Powell. See more »

Goofs

When Theo goes to visit Lynn at her home it is late at night, yet once inside the house, daylight is coming through the windows. See more »

Quotes

Theo Calder: I'm Dr. Caulder. You've been charged with one count of murder, and found incompetent to stand trial.
Pete: She had a demon in her for a while, my neighbour Mrs Karsh.
Theo Calder: Mm-hmm.
Pete: It would come and go. Nobody saw it... except me.
Theo Calder: What did it look like, the demon?
Pete: Um... Did you ever see Alien with Sigourney Weaver?
Theo Calder: It looked like a giant insect?
Pete: No. It looked like Sigourney Weaver.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Conversations with Jon Turteltaub (2000) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Powerful and intelligent assessment of the human condition
2 January 2001 | by (Westport, CT.) – See all my reviews

On any level, this film has to be considered one of the most incisive and painful commentaries on the human condition. Above the acting (superior performances), above the direction, above all the production values is the constant message that we as a race are marching toward an open grave pit. For all our possessions, for all our wealth, for all our so-called achievements, we have yet to learn to respect the intelligence of nature and to act accordingly. "Instinct" is in every living organism and to deny one's own instinct is to go against the natural order. The prison system in this country doesn't work because it is used to destroy man's spirit instead of supporting it. Until we learn how to live in harmony and love with all the other living organisms, we will continue to destroy what we seek to build. Don't buy those Christmas presents - support your wildlife fund. We don't need things, we need spiritual reconnection with the earth we live on. Dr. Powell, as played by Anthony Hopkins, is one of the most highly evolved beings ever seen in a movie. To the writer I am grateful for his creation, to Mr. Hopkins I am grateful for giving us a character to emulate. This movie has made a lasting impression on me. I hope it does the same for everyone who sees it. Open your heart because if you don't, then you will create your own inner prison and live a messy life that the rest of us will have to clean up.


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