7.9/10
142,065
531 user 211 critic

The Insider (1999)

Clip
1:27 | Clip

Watch Now

From $9.99 (SD) on Amazon Video

ON DISC
A research chemist comes under personal and professional attack when he decides to appear in a "60 Minutes" expose on Big Tobacco.

Director:

Writers:

(article), | 1 more credit »
Reviews
Popularity
3,214 ( 242)
Nominated for 7 Oscars. Another 23 wins & 50 nominations. See more awards »
Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Donnie Brasco (1997)
Biography | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

An FBI undercover agent infiltrates the mob and finds himself identifying more with the mafia life, at the expense of his regular one.

Director: Mike Newell
Stars: Al Pacino, Johnny Depp, Michael Madsen
Carlito's Way (1993)
Crime | Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  

A Puerto Rican former convict, just released from prison, pledges to stay away from drugs and violence despite the pressure around him and lead on to a better life outside of N.Y.C.

Director: Brian De Palma
Stars: Al Pacino, Sean Penn, Penelope Ann Miller
Insomnia (2002)
Drama | Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

Two Los Angeles homicide detectives are dispatched to a northern town where the sun doesn't set to investigate the methodical murder of a local teen.

Director: Christopher Nolan
Stars: Al Pacino, Robin Williams, Hilary Swank
Serpico (1973)
Biography | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

An honest New York cop named Frank Serpico blows the whistle on rampant corruption in the force only to have his comrades turn against him.

Director: Sidney Lumet
Stars: Al Pacino, John Randolph, Jack Kehoe
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  

A prep school student needing money agrees to "babysit" a blind man, but the job is not at all what he anticipated.

Director: Martin Brest
Stars: Al Pacino, Chris O'Donnell, James Rebhorn
Drama | Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

An exceptionally adept Florida lawyer is offered a job to work in New York City for a high-end law firm with a high-end boss - the biggest opportunity of his career to date.

Director: Taylor Hackford
Stars: Keanu Reeves, Al Pacino, Charlize Theron
Biography | Drama | Sport
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  

The story of James Braddock, a supposedly washed-up boxer who came back to become a champion and an inspiration in the 1930s.

Director: Ron Howard
Stars: Russell Crowe, Renée Zellweger, Craig Bierko
Heat (1995)
Action | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.2/10 X  

A group of professional bank robbers start to feel the heat from police when they unknowingly leave a clue at their latest heist, while both sides attempt to find balance between their personal and their professional lives.

Director: Michael Mann
Stars: Al Pacino, Robert De Niro, Val Kilmer
Biography | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

In 1970s America, a detective works to bring down the drug empire of Frank Lucas, a heroin kingpin from Manhattan, who is smuggling the drug into the country from the Far East.

Director: Ridley Scott
Stars: Denzel Washington, Russell Crowe, Chiwetel Ejiofor
The Recruit (2003)
Action | Drama | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

A brilliant young CIA trainee is asked by his mentor to help find a mole in the Agency.

Director: Roger Donaldson
Stars: Al Pacino, Colin Farrell, Bridget Moynahan
Crime | Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

A lawyer is forced to defend a guilty judge, while defending other innocent clients, and trying to find punishment for the guilty and provide justice for the innocent.

Director: Norman Jewison
Stars: Al Pacino, Jack Warden, John Forsythe
Drama | Sport
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

A behind-the-scenes look at the life-and-death struggles of modern-day gladiators and those who lead them.

Director: Oliver Stone
Stars: Al Pacino, Dennis Quaid, Cameron Diaz
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
...
...
...
...
...
...
...
...
...
...
John Scanlon
...
Mrs. Williams
...
Barbara Wigand (as Hallie Eisenberg)
Edit

Storyline

Balls-out "60 Minutes" producer Lowell Bergman sniffs a story when a former research biologist for Brown & Williamson, Jeff Wigand, won't talk to him. When the company leans hard on Wigand to honor a confidentiality agreement, he gets his back up. Trusting Bergman and despite a crumbling marriage, he goes on camera for a Mike Wallace interview and risks arrest for contempt of court. Westinghouse is negotiating to buy CBS, so CBS attorneys advise CBS News to shelve the interview and avoid a lawsuit. "60 Minutes" and CBS News bosses cave, Wigand is hung out to dry, Bergman is compromised, and the CEOs of Big Tobacco may get away with perjury. Will the truth come out? Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Warning: Exposing the Truth May Be Hazardous See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

| | |

Release Date:

5 November 1999 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

60 Minutes  »

Edit

Box Office

Budget:

$68,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$6,712,361, 7 November 1999, Wide Release

Gross USA:

$28,965,197, 23 April 2000

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$60,289,912, 31 December 2000
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

| |

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

2.39 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

One of Lowell Bergman's Emmy awards is visible in his bedroom as he is first contacting Wigand. See more »

Goofs

On three separate occasions the same Yellow Taxi is occupied by Bergman or greeted by Bergman when he met Charlie from the Wall Street Journal, the numbers on the roof and door are the "1T80". The odds of this happening are slight, since there are 11,787 Yellow cabs in New York. See more »

Quotes

Lowell Bergman: I'm Lowell Bergman, I'm from 60 Minutes. You know, you take the 60 Minutes out of that sentence, nobody returns your phone call.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Family Guy: Love Blactually (2008) See more »

Soundtracks

Smokey Mountain Waltz
Written and Performed by Richard Gilks
Courtesy of Associated Production Music
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
SMOKE 'EM IF YOU GOT 'EM!!!
6 November 1999 | by See all my reviews

I'll make this simple for you with short attention spans: Al Pacino's best performance of the 90s. Russell Crowe's best work on par with LA Confidential (if not better) and a gripping shot by Christopher Plummer as 60 Minutes anchor Mike Wallace.

For those who can handle it, read on:

Jeffrey Wigand (Russell Crowe) has been fired from his job. He has to break the news to his wife (Diane Venora, who I believe should go on to be one of the best actresses of all time) that their beautiful home, swank cars and health care plan (their oldest daughter is athsmatic) are about to go down the tubes. He's been given a severance package but that's about to fall apart as well.

Enter Lowell Bergman (Pacino), producer for CBS Television News' bastion of journalistic integrity, 60 Minutes. Bergman's doing a report on fires that were started by careless smokers and has been given a report so huge and full of technical jargon he can't make heads or tales of it. Through a friend he is put in touch with Wigand in the hopes of finding a translator. Wigand thinks Lowell is coming after him because of what he knows about his former employers, a major tobacco company.

It is at this moment that director Michael Mann institutes a trick, the likes of which hasn't been seen since All The President's Men. The two exchange a cat-and-mouse conversation via fax. Bergman finally calls Wigand's bluff by daring him to meet him the next day. He does.

What does Wigand know? Well, its all over the papers these days about how the tobacco industry lied about manipulating the leaves to make them more habit forming. We have Wigand to thank for that. But that isn't where the story ends. This is a two-fold tale; on one hand you have the self-destruction of a man who put everything on the line just so he could do the right thing. On the other, you have a television producer who so believes in the integrity of himself, the network, and his show that he is willing to risk everything he has to fight for the protection of his source. I haven't seen this much commitment outside of Woodward and Berstein's staunch protection of "Deep Throat."

The trump card of this film though comes in the form of Christopher Plummer playing one of the most visible news figures of the past 25 years, Mike Wallace. Wallace teeters on the edge of looking like a foul-mouthed, celebrity hungry, media hound who's only thought is about ratings. However, before its over, he evokes the "integrity of Edward R. Murrow," a line that gave me chills and made me pray for an Oscar Nomination.

Director Michael Mann is known chiefly for his Action/Thrillers. This 155 minute film is slow paced but gripping for ever second it is on the screen. A lot of people have complained over the past 7-8 years about Pacino's "staccato" performances, suddenly shouting at the slightest provocation. This film returns him to his prime form, a style he hasn't walked in since Dog Day Afternoon, ...And Justice For All and Serpico.

Anybody got a light?


143 of 177 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?
Review this title | See all 531 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page

The New Class of Holiday Classics

"The IMDb Show" breaks down some of the most memorable and festive animated holiday specials and connects the dots between IMDb's Top 10 Stars of 2017.

Watch now