6.5/10
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547 user 165 critic

Swordfish (2001)

A covert counter-terrorist unit called Black Cell led by Gabriel Shear wants the money to help finance their war against international terrorism, but it's all locked away. Gabriel brings in convicted hacker Stanley Jobson to help him.

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5 wins & 8 nominations. See more awards »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Melissa
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A.D. Joy
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Holly
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Torres (as Angelo Pagán)
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SWAT Leader
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Lawyer
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Agent
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Agent
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Storyline

When the DEA shut down its dummy corporation operation codenamed SWORDFISH in 1986, they had generated $400 million which they let sit around; fifteen years of compound interest has swelled it to $9.5 billion. A covert counter-terrorist unit called Black Cell, headed by the duplicitious and suave Gabriel Shear, wants the money to help finance their raise-the-stakes vengeance war against international terrorism, but it's all locked away behind super-encryption. He brings in convicted hacker Stanley Jobson, who only wants to see his daughter Holly again but can't afford the legal fees, to slice into the government mainframes and get the money. Written by Jeff Cross <blackjac_1998@yahoo.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

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Genres:

Action | Crime | Thriller

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for violence, language and some sexuality/nudity | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Details

Country:

Language:

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Release Date:

8 June 2001 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Swordfish_  »

Filming Locations:

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Box Office

Budget:

$102,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$18,145,632, 10 June 2001, Wide Release

Gross USA:

$69,772,969

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$147,080,413
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

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Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

John Travolta turned down the part of Gabriel a total of six times. He changed his mind when he heard director Dominic Sena's take on it. See more »

Goofs

During one of the hacking scenes, the screen displays the word "algorhythm," which should have been spelled "algorithm." See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Gabriel: You know what the problem with Hollywood is? They make shit. Unbelievable, unremarkable shit. Now I'm not some grungy wannabe filmmaker that's searching for existentialism through a haze of bong smoke or something. No, it's easy to pick apart bad acting, short-sighted directing, and a purely moronic stringing together of words that many of the studios term as "prose". No, I'm talking about the lack of realism. Realism; not a pervasive element in today's modern American cinematic ...
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Crazy Credits

The opening studio logos for Warner Bros and Village Roadshow Productions flicker as if they were on a problematic computer screen. Other than those logos and the movie's title, there are no opening credits. See more »

Connections

Featured in HBO First Look: The Making of 'Swordfish' (2001) See more »

Soundtracks

Planet Rock (Swordfish Mix)
Written by Arthur Baker, John Robie, Afrika Bambaataa, John Miller,
Mr. Biggs (as Ellis Williams), 'Pow Wow' (as Robert Allen), Ralf Hütter,
, Emil Schult, Florian Schneider-Esleben and Karl Bartos
Performed by Paul Oakenfold Presents Afrika Bambaataa and Soul Sonic Force
Courtesy of Tommy Boy Music
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
First Viewing Was A 'Blast'
20 August 2006 | by See all my reviews

Here's a film I really liked the first time, and was totally turned off on the second viewing as the Hollywood bias machine was in high gear again, and you can guess in what director (left or right). Anyway, two things remained the same: John Travolta as "Gabriel Shear" was riveting as an anti-terrorist terrorist. The explosion scene where people are flying sideways is awesome, particularly in the sound department if you have surround system. Oh, and yes, Halle Berry and her figure was on display in this film and quite a sight. Wowzer!

Some of this script is a takeoff on Dog Day Afternoon, which Travolta's character re-enacts a role from that famous '70s film. "Shear" talks about that movie during the film.

I almost got discouraged watching this in the first half hour because there is so much computer terminology that I was lost. However, if you find yourself in a similar spot, take heart because that that ends after that first 30 minutes and is no longer a problem.

Credibility and bias aside, it's still a fun movie for at least one viewing, with that early bomb scene most memorable.


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