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8MM (1999)

R  |   |  Crime, Drama, Mystery  |  26 February 1999 (USA)
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Ratings: 6.5/10 from 100,968 users   Metascore: 19/100
Reviews: 582 user | 137 critic | 20 from Metacritic.com

A private investigator is hired to discover if a "snuff film" is authentic or not.


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2 wins & 1 nomination. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Amy Welles
Myra Carter ...
Mrs. Christian
Jenny Powell ...
Senator Michaelson
Luis Oropeza ...
Archive Director
Mr. Anderson


Private investigator Tom Welles is hired by the recently widowed Mrs. Christian who has found a startling pornographic film in her late husband's possessions. In the film a teenage girl is apparently killed and Welles is pretty sure it's a genuine snuff film. He takes the case, first going through records of runaways finally identifying the girl and learning that she may have run off to California. There he enters the seedy underworld of pornography with the help of Max California, a porn store clerk. His principal clue is the masked man who killed the girl as he has a unique tattoo on his hand. He soon finds the culprits but there is little satisfaction in resolving the mystery. Written by garykmcd

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


You are never prepared for the truth See more »

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for strong perverse sexuality and violence, and for strong language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:






Release Date:

26 February 1999 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

8 Millimeter  »

Box Office


$40,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$14,252,888 (USA) (26 February 1999)


£2,391,380 (UK) (21 May 1999)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:



Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


The plot is extremely similar to that of Hardcore (1979) in which a man (George C. Scott) hires a private detective to track down his daughter after she runs away and he sees her in a 8MM porno movie. The plot is also very similar to a book called "The Cutting Room" by Louise Welsh in which an estate auctioneer finds disturbing photos among a client's porno collection and endeavors to find out if the girl in the pictures was actually killed. See more »


Some projectors, particularly for home use, can introduce a perforated steel plate between the lamp and the film, allowing them to display a freeze-frame. See more »


[first lines]
Airport Announcer: Welcome to Miami. While in the airport, please observe Florida and local laws which prohibit any smoking in the terminal. Thank you for not smoking.
See more »


References Videodrome (1983) See more »


Sick With It
Written by Tairrie Beth, Marcelo Palomino, Rico Villasenor & Brian Harrah
Performed by Tura Satana
Courtesy of Noise Records
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

A dark, graphic view into the underworld of pornography
29 October 2004 | by (London) – See all my reviews

Firstly, this film is hugely under-rated. For those reviewers who call this film a "waste of time" or place it in the "hall of shame", maybe they should go back to watching more obvious and simple films.

8mm focuses on "snuff" movies and follows Nicholas Cage as he ventures into the dark underworld of the pornographic industry. I'm not a great fan of Nicholas Cage (I still wonder how he ever made it as a movie star), but in 8mm felt he redeemed himself from past performances. Other actors in the film put on great performances, notably Joaquin Pheonix, and James Gandolfini (of Sopranos).

What makes the film worth watching though is the emotion, dark imagery and tense moments throughout the film. The storyline too is very well thought out although does have a few holes and untouched areas that may have helped develop the film further. There is no Hollywood ending, forced propaganda, or marketing. What you do get is graphic scenes, moderate violence, and an insight into "snuff" movies (which really is quite disturbing).

Having said that this movie is not for the faint hearted, so if you're a "puppy-dogs and ice-cream" kind of person I'd suggest watching something else. If however, you feel you will be able to stomach such a film then prepare yourself for a moving film, which will leave you feeling that little bit darker at the end.

I highly recommend this film. 8/10

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