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Equilibrium (2002)

R  |   |  Action, Drama, Sci-Fi  |  6 December 2002 (USA)
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Ratings: 7.5/10 from 248,433 users   Metascore: 33/100
Reviews: 1,127 user | 145 critic | 22 from Metacritic.com

In a Fascist future where all forms of feeling are illegal, a man in charge of enforcing the law rises to overthrow the system.



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Dupont (as Angus MacFadyen)
David Barrash ...
Matthew Harbour ...
Emily Siewert ...


In a futuristic world, a strict regime has eliminated war by suppressing emotions: books, art and music are strictly forbidden and feeling is a crime punishable by death. Cleric John Preston (Bale) is a top ranking government agent responsible for destroying those who resist the rules. When he misses a dose of Prozium, a mind-altering drug that hinders emotion, Preston, who has been trained to enforce the strict laws of the new regime, suddenly becomes the only person capable of overthrowing it. Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

dystopia | law | fascist | art | cleric | See All (297) »


The only thing more powerful than the system, is the man that will overthrow it. See more »

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for violence | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

6 December 2002 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Librium  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office


$20,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$541,512 (USA) (6 December 2002)


$104,843 (South Africa) (19 September 2003)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

| |


Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


The poem that Partridge reads in the church is "He wishes for the Cloths of Heaven" by William Butler Yeats, published in the collection "The Wind Among the Reeds" (1899). "Had I the heavens' embroidered cloths, Enwrought with golden and silver light, The blue and the dim and the dark cloths Of night and light and the half-light, I would spread the cloths under your feet: But I, being poor, have only my dreams; I have spread my dreams under your feet; Tread softly because you tread on my dreams." See more »


During the flashback to Viviana Preston's arrest, when John twists the soldier's wrist to take his weapon the gun is an AR-15/M-16, but it then appears to instantly change to a Beretta AR-70 as he holds it on another guard - actually, this is not a continuity error; Preston first disarms a guard of his AR-15 type rifle (by breaking his fingers), then uses that rifle to deflect the weapon of another guard, whose AR-70 he grabs and turns on its owner (it's not possible to see which kind of rifle he uses during the lightning-quick deflect maneuver). See more »


[first lines]
DuPont: In the first years of the 21st century, a third World War broke out. Those of us who survived knew mankind could never survive a fourth; that our own volatile natures could simply no longer be risked. So we have created a new arm of the law: The Grammaton Cleric, whose sole task it is to seek out and eradicate the true source of man's inhumanity to man - his ability to feel.
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Featured in Finding: 'Equilibrium' (2003) See more »

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User Reviews

Cult movie extraordinaire?
10 December 2004 | by (berlin, germany) – See all my reviews

I've seen this movie 5 times (it's the nature of satellite TV) within the past week and it's true...you catch something you've missed or see something new with every successive viewing. This movie is way ahead of its time, and much better than the over-rated Matrix. Bale is always exceptional, and so is his "Metroland" co-star, Emily Watson. Maybe it's the Anglophile or Brit-flick fan in me, but I must say that the added presence of Sean Bean and Angus MacFadyen all but confirms the pre-eminence of UK acting in quality films. Accompanied by very appropriate techno-musik, the action sequences are fast and Euro-flashy, heavily influenced by Jan De Bont--different from the weird, drawn-out, "suspended/string puppet" thing that apparently passes for martial arts these days. (I miss Bruce Lee)

Anyway, if you haven't seen it, give this a shot. If you already have & weren't impressed, take a look at it again. It will grow on you. See if you're inclined to show up to work the next day looking and acting very much a "Cleric" who missed a Prozium dose.

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