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Bowling for Columbine (2002)

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Filmmaker Michael Moore explores the roots of America's predilection for gun violence.



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Won 1 Oscar. Another 40 wins & 12 nominations. See more awards »


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Credited cast:
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Himself - President of Chile (archive footage)
Jacobo Arbenz ...
Himself - President of Guatemala (archive footage)
Mike Bradley ...
Arthur A. Busch ...
Himself (archive footage)
Himself (archive footage)
Michael Caldwell ...
Himself - Police Detective
Richard Castaldo ...
Himself - Columbine Victim
Himself (archive footage)
Steve Davis ...
Himself - Deputy Sheriff (archive footage)
Ngo Dinh Diem ...
Himself - President of South Vietnam (archive footage)
Mike Epstein ...
Himself - Shopper in Mall
Joe Farmer ...
Himself - Superintendent of Schools (archive footage)


The United States of America is notorious for its astronomical number of people killed by firearms for a developed nation without a civil war. With his signature sense of angry humor, activist filmmaker Michael Moore sets out to explore the roots of this bloodshed. In doing so, he learns that the conventional answers of easy availability of guns, violent national history, violent entertainment and even poverty are inadequate to explain this violence when other cultures share those same factors without the equivalent carnage. In order to arrive at a possible explanation, Michael Moore takes on a deeper examination of America's culture of fear, bigotry and violence in a nation with widespread gun ownership. Furthermore, he seeks to investigate and confront the powerful elite political and corporate interests fanning this culture for their own unscrupulous gain. Written by Kenneth Chisholm (kchishol@rogers.com)

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


What a wonderful world. See more »

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for some violent images and language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:




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Release Date:

15 November 2002 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Akiryhtos polemos  »

Filming Locations:



Box Office


$4,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$209,148, 13 October 2002, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$21,244,913, 11 May 2003

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$35,564,473, 31 December 2002
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?


Because the film didn't fit neatly into any established categories at Cannes, the Jury created a special 55th Anniversary Award just for the film. See more »


The "Brief History of America" segment includes the assertion that early Americans burned suspected witches. No accused witches were burned in America. See more »


Chris Rock: You don't need no gun control. You know what you need? We need some bullet control. We need to control the bullets. I think all bullets should cost five thousand dollars. Five thousand dollars for a bullet. You know why? 'Cause if a bullet cost five thousand dollars, there'd be no more innocent bystanders. Every time somebody get shot they'd be like, "Dang, he must've did somethin'! Shit, they put fifty thousand dollars worth of bullets in his ass!" And people would think before they killed ...
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Crazy Credits

In the credits, there is a thank you to Mike's Militia - Athens Branch. This does not exist - Michael Moore, during his speaking engagement at Ohio University, to promote his book, "Stupid White Men," screened two versions of the "History of gun control" animated segment, which featured the same animation but different narration. The audience was asked to vote on which of the two versions should be included. After choosing a version, Moore claimed he would include Athens, Ohio and the audience in the credits, but wasn't sure what name to give credit to. Several suggestions were shouted out and Mike Michigan Militia, Athens, OH branch was finally chosen. See more »


Spoofed in Typisk norsk: Episode #3.1 (2006) See more »


Take the Skinheads Bowling
Written by Victor Krummenacher, David Lowery, Christopher Molla, and
Jonathan Segel
Performed by Teenage Fanclub
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

The key to understanding the american dream (or nightmare?)
30 May 2003 | by See all my reviews

This movie makes me feel that it is the first time i just remotely understand the American society. Michael Moore explores the darkest side of America - the society built on fear. Fear of terrorists, fear of the coloureds fear of your neighbor. It appears that americans have lost perspective, not noticing the real dangers of life: pollution, traffic, e.t.c. With TV-channels telling stories only about violence and terrorism and populistic politicians scaring people to vote for them Americans trust only in themselves.

Michael Moore tries with this movie to make the Americans consider and think for themselves being rationals, and to tell the rest of the world how the American society works. Really something to think about... See it, its necessary

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