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Ladder 49 (2004)

PG-13 | | Action, Drama, Thriller | 1 October 2004 (USA)
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Under the watchful eye of his mentor Captain Mike Kennedy, probationary firefighter Jack Morrison matures into a seasoned veteran at a Baltimore fire station. Jack has reached a crossroads,... See full summary »

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1 win & 6 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

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Steve Maye ...
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Ed Reilly (as Robert Logan Lewis)
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Spencer Berglund ...
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Storyline

Under the watchful eye of his mentor Captain Mike Kennedy, probationary firefighter Jack Morrison matures into a seasoned veteran at a Baltimore fire station. Jack has reached a crossroads, however, as the sacrifices he's made have put him in harm's way innumerable times and significantly impacted his relationship with his wife and kids. Responding to the worst blaze in his career, he becomes trapped inside a 20-story building. And as he reflects on his life, now Deputy Chief Kennedy frantically coordinates the effort to save him.

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Everything they know. All that they love. Is what they risk every day. See more »

Genres:

Action | Drama | Thriller

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for intense fire and rescue situations, and for language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Details

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Release Date:

1 October 2004 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Brigada 49  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Budget:

$55,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$22,088,204 (USA) (1 October 2004)

Gross:

$74,540,762 (USA) (18 February 2005)
 »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

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Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

As part of a preparation for the movie, Joaquin Phoenix trained for a month at a fire academy and spent another month with the men of Baltimore's Truck 10. He became an "honorary member" and had the same tattoo as the men of the company, a bumble bee wearing a fire helmet with an ax. See more »

Goofs

At the beginning of the movie, Jack is carrying a red bag which he puts down when tending to the first found victim. After having the other firefighters carry him down, the bag reappears when he is going after the second victim, but he never picked it back up. See more »

Quotes

Dennis Gauquin: [bringing beer to the table] Here we go, green beers all around.
Linda Morrison: I'm good, thanks.
Dennis Gauquin: Uh, Linda? It's Saint Paddy's Day, everyone drinks.
Linda Morrison: It's okay, I'm not drinking, I'll just have a diet coke.
Dennis Gauquin: What, are you pregnant?
[long silence from Linda]
Jack Morrison: [Jack looks incredulously at Linda who nods] What? You're kidding!
Linda Morrison: Baby, I was gonna wait and tell you tonight. I wanted to surprise you!
See more »

Connections

References Lethal Weapon (1987) See more »

Soundtracks

Twice as Hard
Written by Chris Robinson and Rich Robinson
Performed by The Black Crowes
Courtesy of American Recordings, LLC
Under license from Universal Music Enterprises
See more »

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User Reviews

A Nutshell Review: Ladder 49
26 November 2004 | by (Singapore) – See all my reviews

First, let me explain the movie title.

The firehouse featured in the movie has 2 vehicles. One of them is the more conventional fire truck you see around, the one with the water hoses. That truck is codenamed Engine 33 in this movie. Ladder 49 is its companion truck, the one with the mega-ladder. This truck comprises of the brave men in the fire department's rescue team, those who risk their lives going into burning buildings without water (unlike Engine 33's), for the sole mission of saving other people's lives.

Which raises the question everyone asks of emergency responders (police, fire dept, etc) - what makes them do what they do? In this case, also raised in the movie, what makes them rush into a burning building when everyone else is running out?

We follow the life of Joaquin Phoenix's character, Jack Morrison, whom we see from rookie firefighter (waterboy) to hero, from singlehood to fatherhood. This film, through his character, humanizes emergency responders, their lives, their camaraderie, their courage. It also explores relationships within their families, which is key, as family members struggle to understand the risks their spouses/fathers undertake everyday in their job.

Don't expect another Backdraft, which was more of an "arson-whodunnit", with spectacular beastly fires engulfing the screen. This film dwells more on characterization and drama, with well placed action set pieces between slow moments which will set you thinking, and at the end of the film, appreciating the courage of these brave men and the threats they face daily in their job.


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