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The Cell (2000)

R  |   |  Horror, Sci-Fi, Thriller  |  18 August 2000 (USA)
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Ratings: 6.3/10 from 76,903 users   Metascore: 40/100
Reviews: 673 user | 221 critic | 32 from Metacritic.com

An FBI agent persuades a social worker, who is adept with a new experimental technology, to enter the mind of a comatose serial killer in order to learn where he has hidden his latest kidnap victim.


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Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 6 wins & 23 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Henry West
Dr. Barry Cooperman
Lucien Baines
Gordon Ramsey
Julia Hickson
Mrs. Hickson


Catharine Deane is a psychotherapist who is part of a revolutionary new treatment which allows her mind to literally enter the mind of her patients. Her experience in this method takes an unexpected turn when an FBI agent comes to ask for a desperate favour. They had just tracked down a notorious serial killer, Carl Stargher, whose MO is to abduct women one at a time and place them in a secret area where they are kept for about 40 hours until they are slowly drowned. Unfortunately, the killer has fallen into an irreversible coma which means he cannot confess where he has taken his latest victim before she dies. Now, Catherine Deane must race against time to explore the twisted mind of the killer to get the information she needs, but Stargher's damaged personality poses dangers that threaten to overwhelm her. Written by Kenneth Chisholm <kchishol@home.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


enter the mind of a killer See more »

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for bizarre violence and sexual images, nudity and language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:



Official Sites:




Release Date:

18 August 2000 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Ćelija  »

Box Office


$33,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$17,515,050 (USA) (18 August 2000)


ESP 652,426,863 (Spain) (29 June 2001)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


| (director's cut)

Sound Mix:

| |


Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


The scene when Catherine Deane is chasing Carl through a stone hallway, right before she enters the room with the horse, is based on a painting by Swiss surrealist H.R. Giger called "Schacht". See more »


Carl's first victim is sitting up with her breasts partially covered by bloody water; in subsequent shots, the water is higher on her body. See more »


Catharine Deane: Hey you.
[pets young Carl's horse]
Catharine Deane: You know, I know another little boy who has a horse. His name's Edward. The boy, not the horse.
See more »


References The Lawnmower Man (1992) See more »


Written by Raiz (as G. Della Volpe), Stefano Facchielli (as S. Facchielli), Giovanni Mantice (as G. Mantice), Pier Paolo Polcari and Gennaro Tesone (as G. Tesone)
Performed by Almamegretta (as Alma Me Gretta)
Courtesy of BMG Ricordi S.p.A.
By Arrangement with The RCA Records Label of BMG Entertainment
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

Creativly original.
1 January 2006 | by (Groningen, The Netherlands) – See all my reviews

This movie is definitely a case of style over substance but the style is good and certainly more than unique on its own to make "The Cell" a memorable and above average movie.

"The Cell" is beautifully looking with impressive sets, costumes and make-up. Yes, it's real eye candy to watch all. The movie has some perfectly 'dreamy' sequences that are certainly odd but also very beautiful and imaginative to look at. This movie is a perfect mix of an art-house type of movie and a typical Hollywood-thriller, that is accessible to both fans of the genre.

The story itself is pretty far fetched and doesn't always make sense. Because of that the movie isn't always pleasant and likable to watch but like I mentioned before, the style compensates for this. The style makes you keep watching till the end and provides the best moments of the movie.

Vincent D'Onofrio is unforgettable as the serial-killer with a twisted mind. Vincent D'Onofrio is really underused as an actor and this movie shows his talent once more. I'm not particularly happy about the casting of Jennifer Lopez. I know that she can act in some of her movies but she really wasn't suitable to play the main character in this movie. Her character wasn't strong enough and she was overshadowed by Vincent D'Onofrio and Vince Vaughn. Still I felt that Vince Vaughn was also miscast in this movie. He didn't fit the role well enough and no, I'm not saying that because I'm used of seeing him only in comedies now days. The rest of the supporting cast is good and still give the movie a certain degree of credibility.

The musical score by Howard Shore was also surprising good and was sort of "Se7en" like at times. It suited the movie well and gave some of the scene's some extra mood and atmosphere.

It's a far from perfect movie and the concept is far fetched and not always handled in the right way. Still "The Cell" is a perfectly watchable movie and perhaps even a bit of a must see, due to its style, originality and creativity.



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