7.0/10
23,442
133 user 198 critic

The Conspirator (2010)

PG-13 | | Crime, Drama, History | 15 April 2011 (USA)
Trailer
2:24 | Trailer

Watch Now

From $2.99 on Amazon Video

ON DISC
Mary Surratt is the lone female charged as a co-conspirator in the assassination trial of Abraham Lincoln. As the whole nation turns against her, she is forced to rely on her reluctant lawyer to uncover the truth and save her life.

Director:

Writers:

(as James Solomon), (story) (as James Solomon) | 1 more credit »
2 wins & 3 nominations. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Biography | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

A historical drama that illustrates Russian author Leo Tolstoy's struggle to balance fame and wealth with his commitment to a life devoid of material things.

Director: Michael Hoffman
Stars: Helen Mirren, James McAvoy, Christopher Plummer
Action | Crime | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

When a notorious criminal is forced to return to London, it gives a detective one last chance to take down the man he's always been after.

Director: Eran Creevy
Stars: James McAvoy, Mark Strong, Andrea Riseborough
Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

A former Weather Underground activist goes on the run from a journalist who has discovered his identity.

Director: Robert Redford
Stars: Robert Redford, Brit Marling, Stanley Tucci
Trance I (2013)
Crime | Drama | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

An art auctioneer who has become mixed up with a group of criminals partners with a hypnotherapist in order to recover a lost painting.

Director: Danny Boyle
Stars: James McAvoy, Rosario Dawson, Vincent Cassel
Comedy | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

Set in 1985, working-class student Brian Jackson (McAvoy) navigates his first year at Bristol University.

Director: Tom Vaughan
Stars: James McAvoy, Alice Eve, Rebecca Hall
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

Told from the male perspective, the story of a couple trying to reclaim the life and love they once knew and pick up the pieces of a past that may be too far gone.

Director: Ned Benson
Stars: James McAvoy, Jessica Chastain, Nina Arianda
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

One couple's story as they try to reclaim the life and love they once knew and pick up the pieces of a past that may be too far gone.

Director: Ned Benson
Stars: James McAvoy, Jessica Chastain, Viola Davis
Becoming Jane (2007)
Biography | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

A biographical portrait of a pre-fame Jane Austen and her romance with a young Irishman.

Director: Julian Jarrold
Stars: Anne Hathaway, James McAvoy, Julie Walters
Drama | Thriller | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  

Injuries sustained by two Army rangers behind enemy lines in Afghanistan set off a sequence of events involving a congressman, a journalist and a professor.

Director: Robert Redford
Stars: Tom Cruise, Meryl Streep, Robert Redford
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  

When the kinetic Rory moves into his room in the Carrigmore Residential Home for the Disabled, his effect on the home is immediate. Most telling is his friendship with Michael, a young man with cerebral palsy and nearly unintelligible speech. Somehow, Rory understands Michael, and encourages him to experience life outside the confines of home.

Director: Damien O'Donnell
Stars: James McAvoy, Romola Garai, Steven Robertson
Penelope (2006)
Comedy | Fantasy | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

A modern romantic tale about a young aristocratic heiress born under a curse that can only be broken when she finds true love with "one who will love her faithfully."

Director: Mark Palansky
Stars: Christina Ricci, James McAvoy, Reese Witherspoon
Biography | Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

Based on the events of the brutal Ugandan dictator Idi Amin's regime as seen by his personal physician during the 1970s

Director: Kevin Macdonald
Stars: James McAvoy, Forest Whitaker, Gillian Anderson
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
...
...
...
Nicholas Baker
...
Joseph Holt
...
William Hamilton
...
General Hunter
...
...
...
...
Louis Weichmann
...
...
Justice Wylie
Edit

Storyline

In the wake of Abraham Lincoln's assassination, seven men and one woman are arrested and charged with conspiring to kill the President, the Vice-President, and the Secretary of State. The lone woman charged, Mary Surratt, 42, owns a boarding house where John Wilkes Booth and others met and planned the simultaneous attacks. Against the ominous back-drop of post-Civil War Washington, newly-minted lawyer, Frederick Aiken, a 28-year-old Union war-hero, reluctantly agrees to defend Surratt before a military tribunal. As the trial unfolds, Aiken realizes his client may be innocent and that she is being used as bait and hostage in order to capture the only conspirator to have escaped a massive manhunt, her own son. Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

One bullet killed the President. But not one man.

Genres:

Crime | Drama | History

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for some violent content | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

15 April 2011 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

El conspirador  »

Box Office

Budget:

$25,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$3,509,048 (USA) (15 April 2011)

Gross:

$11,538,204 (USA) (9 September 2011)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

The shots involving the audience watching the play were not filmed on the same day as the shots of the play itself but months later. The audience's reactions were shot on the same stage as the court room. The extras watched a little TV monitor of the play, while Robert Redford directed them, and a double stood in for Booth. The double split his pants when he fell from the "box window", and the footage of the extras laughing were a result of that. See more »

Goofs

When Booth is trapped and killed, he still wears his distinctive mustache. In fact, shortly after assassinating Abraham Lincoln, he shaved his face, so as to be more difficult to identify. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Frederick Aiken: Two men standing at the Pearly Gates. The first man says, "How'd you die?" Second says, "I froze to death. How 'bout you?" And the, uh, second man says, "Well, I thought my... my wife was being unfaithful to me, so I ran all the way home. And burst into the bedroom. She just..."
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Ebert Presents: At the Movies: Episode #1.14 (2011) See more »

Soundtracks

The Children of the Battlefield
Words and Music by James G. Clark
Arranged by Kelli Horton
Performed by Kelli Horton and Justin Long
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
Guilty or innocent, "The Conspirator" gets it all right
21 May 2011 | by (Ontario, Canada) – See all my reviews

"The Conspirator" is an impossible trial to win, but it's tried by the best cast in the best manner possible. Heroes returned home from the Civil War to be greeted by the Secretary of War, Edwin Stanton (Kevin Kline) and other high-profile members of the War Department. President Abraham Lincoln was occupied elsewhere.

After the assassination of Lincoln, we follow not so much the trials of the conspirators, but the trials of lawyer Frederick Aiken (James McAvoy). McAvoy has quickly forged an incredible career where he has a propensity to play the man next to historical figures and provide us with an inside view (like the doctor to Idi Amin in "The Last King of Scotland" or secretary to Leo Tolstoy in "The Last Station").

Here, McAvoy is the very patriotic soldier-turned-lawyer defending Mary Surrat (Robin Wright), the lone female conspirator. The film focuses only on Surrat's part of the trial of the conspirators, mostly because this film is about her lawyer. A devout supporter of Stanton and the Union, Aiken believed that Surrat was guilty and spent just as much time proving her guilt as her innocence. His internal struggles accepting everything that he had to do and what he should do were rather profound. I also think they make up McAvoy's best performance of his career. Too bad that the Academy will have forgotten it by the time the Oscars come around.

Like the best historical dramas, Redford never comes out and says if he believes that Surrat was innocent or guilty. "The Conspirator" isn't about that. This is about the trial. His views on the use of a military tribunal versus a civil trial are clear.

I was blown away by the impeccable production, the cast, and the sheer atrocities committed by so many of the characters not on trial. There may have been a few artistic licences taken, but I doubt it was with the extremes to which some military personnel will go. The great Kevin Kline and the up-and-coming Johnny Simmons play the two least sympathetic characters in the movie. Phenomenal casting is just one the great aspects of "The Conspirator".


42 of 44 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Why no security for a war-time president ? humayunimam
Mary Surratt - guilty or innocent? gen57
Who has read 'Killing Lincoln' by Bill O'Reilly? meso97ts
Foreign Actors in American Roles TimMeade
Loved it ! geoffreyudin1
I am really missing some info! auntbaby
Discuss The Conspirator (2010) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?