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Silver City
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Silver City (2004) More at IMDbPro »

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Silver City -- The discovery of a corpse threatens to unravel a bumbling local politician's campaign for governor of Colorado.
Silver City -- The discovery of a corpse threatens to unravel a bumbling local politician's campaign for governor of Colorado.


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Down 8% in popularity this week. See why on IMDbPro.
Writer (WGA):
John Sayles (written by)
View company contact information for Silver City on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
24 September 2004 (USA) See more »
Corruption Run Deeps See more »
The discovery of a corpse threatens to unravel a bumbling local politician's campaign for governor of Colorado. Full summary » | Add synopsis »
1 win & 1 nomination See more »
User Reviews:
Not Sayles' best, but still worth seeing See more (79 total) »


  (in credits order) (verified as complete)

Chris Cooper ... Dickie Pilager

Richard Dreyfuss ... Chuck Raven

Cajardo Lindsey ... Lloyd
John C. Ashton ... Director
Elizabeth Rainer ... Leslie
Donevon Martinez ... Lazaro Huerta

James Gammon ... Sheriff Joe Skaggs

Benjamin Kroger ... Deputy Davis
Charles Mitchell ... Henry

Danny Huston ... Danny O'Brien
Alma Delfina ... Lupe Montoya
Roslyn Washington ... Hilary

David Clennon ... Mort Seymour

Mary Kay Place ... Grace Seymour

Tim Roth ... Mitch Paine

Thora Birch ... Karen Cross

Maria Bello ... Nora Allardyce

Jan Van Sickle ... Reporter #1

Miguel Ferrer ... Cliff Castleton

Denis Berkfeldt ... Reverend Tubbs

Billy Zane ... Chandler Tyson
Patricia Calhoun ... Reporter #2 (as Patty Calhoun)

Maggie Roswell ... Ellie Hastings
Paul Rohrer ... Phil Ross
Rich Beall ... Freddy Mondragon (as Richard Beall)
Mare Trevathan Phillpott ... Rebecca Zeller (as Mare Trevathan Philpott)
David Russell ... Foreman

Luis Saguar ... Vince Esparza

Sal Lopez ... Tony Guerra
Gary Sirchia ... Preacher

Michael Murphy ... Senator Judson Pilager

Ralph Waite ... Casey Lyle

Kris Kristofferson ... Wes Benteen
Rodney Lizcano ... Yanez
Stephen Brackett ... Dewey Jr.

Daryl Hannah ... Maddy Pilager
Aaron Vieyra ... Fito

Hugo E. Carbajal ... Rafi
Michael Shalhoub ... Leo

Amie MacKenzie ... Marcy
Larry Gallegos ... Contreras
rest of cast listed alphabetically:

James Aidan ... Newscaster (voice) (uncredited)

Directed by
John Sayles 
Writing credits
John Sayles (written by)

Produced by
Suzanne Ceresko .... associate producer
Robert Lansing Parker .... co-producer (as Lansing Parker)
Maggie Renzi .... producer
Sam Tedesco .... associate producer
Original Music by
Mason Daring (music by)
Cinematography by
Haskell Wexler (director of photography)
Film Editing by
John Sayles (edited by)
Casting by
John Hubbard (casting by)
Ros Hubbard (casting by)
Production Design by
Toby Corbett 
Set Decoration by
Alice Baker 
Costume Design by
Shay Cunliffe 
Makeup Department
Lynn Barber .... makeup
Melinda Dunn .... assistant hair
Matt Griffin .... special effects makeup
Colleen Provost .... assistant makeup
Dee Sandella .... hair
Melissa Yonkey .... hair
Production Management
Kendall McCarthy .... post production supervisor
Robert Lansing Parker .... unit production manager (as Lansing Parker)
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Sandy McLeod .... second unit director
Brian Moon .... second assistant director
John Powditch .... first assistant director
Denise Strong .... second second assistant director
Art Department
Ann Marie Auricchio .... lead painter
Kordon Baker .... set dresser
Robin Bartlett-Asnicar .... set dresser (as Robin Bartlett Asnicar)
Chad Branham .... assistant prop master
Cassandra W. Cole .... additional scenic
Jamie A. Curl .... draper (as Jamie Curl)
Jared Darlington .... prop maker
Kyle Davio .... art department coordinator
Jerry Duke .... set dresser
James Wiley Fowler .... set dresser (as James Fowler)
Hank P. Garcia .... prop maker
LeRoy Gilbert .... prop maker
Briggs Gillen .... scenic artist
Briggs Gillen .... sculptor
Thomas Sam Hall .... construction foreman
Chris Jones .... assistant art director
Dylan Kiszlowski .... leadman
Alan Klemm .... scenic artist
Michael B. Muery .... prop maker
Ryan Plucknett .... construction coordinator
Angelique Powers .... additional scenic
Grant Sawyer .... on-set dresser
Steven Schalk .... prop master (as Steve Schalk)
Brady Clayton Scott .... labor
Brady Clayton Scott .... utility
Paul Sjoberg .... set dresser (as Paul F. Sjoberg)
Jennifer Snoeyink .... scenic artist
Sound Department
Laura Civiello .... dialogue editor
Marko A. Costanzo .... foley artist (as Marko Costanzo)
Robert Fernandez .... rerecording mixer
Chris Fielder .... first assistant sound editor
Judy Karp .... sound mixer
Frank Kern .... foley editor
George A. Lara .... foley engineer
Terrance Laudermilch .... rerecording mixer (as Terry Laudermilch)
Marissa Littlefield .... adr editor
Glenfield Payne .... sound designer
Jaime Reyes .... boom operator
Nani Schumann .... sound apprentice
Steve F.B. Smith .... sound consultant: Dolby
Philip Stockton .... supervising sound editor
Robert Troeller .... technical sound services (as Bob Troeller)
Steven Visscher .... foley supervisor
Jacob Ribicoff .... foley editor (uncredited)
Special Effects by
William Boggs .... special effects coordinator (as Bill Boggs)
Kti Eaton .... special effects model maker (as Kt! Eaton)
John Perry .... special effects foreman
Timothy Hampton .... special effects assistant (uncredited)
Visual Effects by
Joshua Frankel .... visual effects (uncredited)
Thomas Mathai .... data manager (uncredited)
Camera and Electrical Department
Brook Aitken .... additional grip
Dennis Baker .... grip
Keith Banks .... additional lighting technician (as Keith H. Banks)
John F. Cassidy .... best boy grip (as John Cassidy)
Kenny Davis .... dolly grip (as Kenneth Davis)
Edward Done .... director of photography: second unit
Michael Duran .... additional grip
Megan Forste .... second assistant camera
Christopher Gerding .... grip (as Chris 'Gerdo' Gerding)
Christopher Glasgow .... grip
Nelson Goforth .... swing
James R. Goldsworthy .... "b" camera first assistant
Justin Griesinger .... swing
James Hatridge .... lighting technician (as James L. Hatridge)
Tom Lembcke .... key grip
Rusty Loudermilk .... additional lighting technician (as Rusty Lowdermilk)
Bob Marshak .... still photographer
Terry Moses .... additional grip (as Terry L. Moses)
Robert Muratore .... additional lighting technician
Douglas O'Kane .... "b" camera first assistant (as Doug O'Kane)
Douglas O'Kane .... first assistant camera: second unit (as Doug O'Kane)
Reinhart 'Rayteam' Peschke .... chief lighting technician (as Ray Peschke)
David Quint .... crane technician
Tony Rivetti .... first assistant camera
Dave Schaaf .... video assist
Ingrid Semler .... camera loader
Arte Shelton .... grip: second unit
Chris Squires .... camera operator
Chris Squires .... steadicam operator
Matt Stelling .... additional grip
Steve Van Ness .... assistant chief lighting technician
Laszlo E. Varga .... additional lighting technician
Michael Wieben .... grip (as Mike 'Big Dog' Wieben)
Jon Wignall .... lighting technician
David Youngs .... additional grip (as Dave 'Monkey' Youngs)
Scott Zuchowski .... lighting technician
Camilo Jarquin .... assistant camera (uncredited)
Lowell Pierce .... assistant camera (uncredited)
Larry Towell .... art photographer: Magnum Photos (uncredited)
Casting Department
Kathleen Broyles .... casting: Denver
Ali Durlin .... casting intern: Denver
Noah Geisel .... casting assistant: Denver
Tamara Notcutt .... principal casting associate (as Tamara-Lee Notcutt)
Rob Sackett .... casting assistant: Denver
Jess Clark .... casting assistant: USA (uncredited)
MaryLynn Malone .... extras casting intern (uncredited)
Brendan McNamara .... casting assistant (uncredited)
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Kelli Hobson .... wardrobe assistant
Annette Holt .... on-set costumer
Mimi Kaupe .... on-set costumer
Lorie L. LaBrant .... wardrobe assistant
Katie Saunders .... costume supervisor
Editorial Department
Steve Bowen .... digital color timer
Mo Henry .... negative cutter
Mario Ontal .... associate editor
Chris Regan .... color timer
Plummy Tucker .... associate editor
Steve Barnett .... post-production consultant (uncredited)
Ben Estrada .... digital colorist assistant (uncredited)
Location Management
Julie Anne Moore .... assistant location manager
Jessica Renzi-Bailey .... location assistant
Daniell Taff .... location assistant
Sam Tedesco .... location manager (uncredited)
Music Department
Jeanine Cowen .... music editor
Bill Elliott .... conductor
Bill Elliott .... orchestration
Sato Knudsen .... music contractor
Duke Levine .... guitar
Dave Mattacks .... percussion
Mike Peipman .... trumpet
Gus Sebring .... french horn
Dave Shacter .... music mixer
Dave Shacter .... recorded and mixed by
Frank Wolf .... music mixer: Mix One Studios, Boston (as Frank Wolfe)
Frank Wolf .... recorded and mixed by: Mix One Studios, Boston (as Frank Wolfe)
Transportation Department
Frank Braham .... driver: set dressing
Steve Davenport .... driver: makeup/hair
C. David Earle .... driver: production van (as David Earle)
Suzette Earle .... driver: camera truck
Rhonda Hansen .... driver: van
Phil Helman .... driver: props
Jerry Jencks .... driver: grip
Darryl Maggs .... driver: stake bed
Anna Maxwell .... driver: van
Eddie McGarraugh .... driver: van
Pat Moser .... driver: van
Terry R. Owens .... transportation captain
Dennis Steele .... driver: set dressing
Gene Ward .... transportation coordinator
Jeff Woodward .... driver: honey wagon
Other crew
Carol Alexander .... accounting clerk
Julia Anderson .... intern
Matthew Ryan Anderson .... additional set production assistant (as Matt Anderson)
Tara Anderson .... office intern: New York
Jeff Archuleta .... additional set production assistant
Len Aslanian .... office intern: New York
Marcus Barben .... first assisstant (as Markus Barben)
Meredith Blake .... office manager: New York
Susan H. Bodine .... legal services: Epstein, Levinsohn, Bodine, Hurwitz & Weinstein, LLP (as Sue Bodine)
Karen Bosma .... production coordinator
Todd Callan .... additional set production assistant
Andrea F. Cannistraci .... legal services: Epstein, Levinsohn, Bodine, Hurwitz & Weinstein, LLP (as Andrea Cannistraci)
Ricardo Casillas .... office production assistant
Franklin Crosby .... intern
Mary Cybulski .... script supervisor
Payton Dunham .... set production assistant
Sinan Germirli .... intern
Alec Giardino .... stand-in
Lisa Goldsworthy .... additional set production assistant
Hannah Hancock Rubinsky .... office intern: New York
Sheri Kaz .... additional set production assistant
Todd Kruger .... intern
Sandy Madden .... intern
Angela C. Maez .... production secretary
MaryLynn Malone .... intern (as Marylynn Malone)
Ilana McAllister .... first assistant accountant
Gary Miller .... chef
Matt Mosley .... office intern: New York
Dylan Mulick .... office intern: New York
Henry Oshell .... second assistant (as Henry R. Ochel Jr.)
James Pagel .... medic (as Jim Pagel)
Monica Perez Gelbman .... post-production accountant
Sabrina Rehnke .... intern
Lynne Robertson .... craft service
Aaron Rosenbloom .... set production assistant
Bryan Saunders .... set production assistant (as Bryan 'Boo' Saunders)
Nicole Sherwin .... intern
A. Rochell Smith .... additional set production assistant (as Rochell Smith)
Justine Spicer .... additional set production assistant (as Justin Spicer)
Spooky Stevens .... unit publicist
Sharon Vise .... production accountant
Angelica Vogt .... intern
Rachel Young .... office production assistant (as M. Rachel Young)
MaryLynn Malone .... set medic (uncredited)
Kirk Tedeski .... video effects supervisor (uncredited)
Crew believed to be complete

Production CompaniesDistributorsSpecial Effects
  • RhinoFX (visual effects) (as Rhinofx, New York City)
Other Companies

Additional Details

Also Known As:
Rated R for language
128 min
Aspect Ratio:
1.85 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:

Did You Know?

Chris Cooper and David Clennon would later appear in another politically charged movie, Syriana (2005).See more »
Continuity: When Danny is talking to Maddy (towards the end of the scene at the back of her house), she appears to be wearing a jacket when shot from the front and a vest top when shot from behind.See more »
[first lines]
Ad Spokesman:Richard Pilager cares about Colorado.
See more »
Movie Connections:
References All the President's Men (1976)See more »
JuarezSee more »


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34 out of 39 people found the following review useful.
Not Sayles' best, but still worth seeing, 29 September 2004
Author: anhedonia from Planet Earth

Dickie Pilager is running for governor of Colorado. He's a good-looking frat boy with a dubious past that includes at least one drunken-driving charge. But he comes from a politically influential family and his daddy's a powerful U.S. senator. Dickie, however, lacks panache. He can't put together a simple sentence without stumbling. He's terrible when he's unscripted, cannot function without a teleprompter, doesn't have a clue what he's talking about, reduces policies to simple catch-phrases, but the wealthy contribute generously to his campaign and he's awfully "user-friendly" to big business. As one character in "Silver City" points out, Dickie sounds gubernatorial on TV when the sound's muted. Sound familiar?

In "Silver City," writer/editor/director John Sayles rolls a "Chinatown"-esque murder mystery, cynical political commentary and pointed observations about contemporary media into one film that succeeds more often than not. There are moments when I got the impression Sayles was trying too hard to drive home his point about Dickie's incompetence. As fun as it might have been to mock Dickie, he's too easy a target. The greasy players around Dickie - for instance, his handler Chuck Raven (played with smarmy charm by Richard Dreyfuss) - are far more interesting. Where "Silver City" crackles is in its distrust of our political system, the influence of slimy corporate types on candidates and ineptitude of the media.

Despite this being one of Sayles' weaker films, he remains one of the finest filmmakers this nation has produced in the last 25 years. His filmography contains some of the best independent films in recent memory - "Return of the Secaucus 7" (1980), "Lianna" (1983), "Matewan" (1987), "Eight Men Out" (1988), "Passion Fish" (1992), his masterpiece, "Lone Star" (1996) and "Men With Guns" (2000). Even much of his lesser-known works, "City of Hope" (1991), "The Secret of Roan Inish" (1994) and "Limbo" (1999), are remarkable pieces of storytelling. He's also socially conscious, acutely aware of the importance of shedding light on social problems, be they the plight of immigrants, childless couples or corruptibility of politicians.

What's ultimately a bit disappointing about "Silver City" is not so much its multi-layered story, but Sayles' inability to keep it tightly wound. As much as I admire Sayles, another editor with a fresh set of eyes might have helped tremendously.

He's deftly handled multi-story plots before, but this film doesn't seem keenly focused. Sayles weaves too many threads that don't patch together all that well. He relies a bit too much on coincidence - especially using two migrant workers in a pivotal plot point - to unravel his mystery and many interesting subplots and characters remain dangling, most glaringly a subplot involving reporter Nora (an under-used Mario Bello) and her fiancé Chandler (Billy Zane), a self-proclaimed "champion of the underdog" - he's a big-business and tobacco lobbyist.

The actors, many of them Sayles regulars, are terrific, as usual. Chris Cooper plays Dickie with great aplomb, but Sayles surprisingly wastes other talented actors in throwaway roles. Tim Roth, Thora Birch and Daryl Hannah have little to do in roles that scream for more importance. Hannah gets some of the best dialogue, but her Maddy Pilager needed more screen time.

Sayles' Jake Gittes is reporter-turned-investigator Danny O'Brien, who's more akin to Elliot Gould's Marlowe than Bogart's. Danny Huston plays O'Brien with tremendous charm, but Huston lacks the magnetism of his sister, father or grandfather. David Strathairn might have worked better. Another Sayles regular, Joe Morton, would have been a fascinating choice.

Sayles' cynicism about our wimpy media and political process is well founded. We're, after all, living in an age when the media ignored the real story behind the Florida debacle in the 2000 election (the disenfranchisement of hundreds, if not thousands, of black voters); reporters shirk their duties for fear of being branded as unpatriotic; major newspapers issue mea culpas for swallowing everything this administration served up, never questioning its motives in the lead up to the (utterly meaningless and pointless) war in Iraq; political candidates hold "town meetings" with pre-screened audiences who sign loyalty oaths and serve up pre-arranged softball questions; and at least one TV news network's mostly a mouthpiece for a political party.

Sayles' forte's always been excellent dialogue and when he moves away from Dickie, the writing often is smart, piercing and worthy of his best work. There are two especially razor-sharp moments - between Chuck and Danny at a bar, and a post-coitus Maddy.

"Silver City" is by no means mediocre. And, frankly, even mediocre Sayles would be better than most of what Hollywood makes. Though this film still is better than most at the multiplex right now, this is sub par Sayles. He set the standard so high with "Matewan" and "Lone Star" that we expect better from him.

"Silver City" concludes on a symbolic, cautionary note about the dangers of allowing the Dickie Pilagers of this world to win. The scary thing is we already have a real-life Dickie Pilager. And despite his good intentions, he's more dangerous than anyone fiction could ever create.

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