Choke (2008)

R  |   |  Comedy, Drama  |  26 September 2008 (USA)
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Ratings: 6.5/10 from 27,860 users   Metascore: 47/100
Reviews: 69 user | 159 critic | 27 from

A sex-addicted con-man pays for his mother's hospital bills by playing on the sympathies of those who rescue him from choking to death.



(screenplay), (novel)
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2 wins & 6 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Kathryn Alexander ...
Mousy Girl / Agnes
Teodorina Bello ...
Jamaican Lady
Edwin's Wife
Willi Burke ...
Deranged Socialite (as Wilma 'Willi' Burke)
Internet Date / Gwen
Viola Harris ...
Nico (as Paz De La Huerta)
Shapely Nurse


Sex addict and colonial theme park worker, Victor Mancini, has devised a complicated scam to pay for his mom's hospital bills while she suffers from an Alzheimer's disease that hides the truth about his childhood. He pretends to choke on food in a restaurant and the person who "saves" him will feel responsible for Victor for the rest of their lives. Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


From the author of Fight Club


Comedy | Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for strong sexual content, nudity and language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

26 September 2008 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Asfixia  »

Box Office


$3,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$1,319,286 (USA) (26 September 2008)


$2,926,565 (USA) (21 November 2008)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:



Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Clark Gregg:  [hugging]  main characters achieve emotional state while hugging. See more »


When Victor is attempting to feed his mother cannelloni in their first meeting scene, the camera changes angle and she is not wearing the napkins he previously placed under her chin. When the camera moves back to another angle the napkins have miraculously returned. See more »


Lord High Charlie: Fucking Knave!
See more »


References Gilligan's Island (1964) See more »


Navy Nurse
Written by Matthew Friedberger and Eleanor Friedberger
Performed by The Fiery Furnaces
Courtesy of Thrill Jockey Records
By Arrangement with Bank Robber Music
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

Good for a 90 minute film -- Better and fuller if it was 2 hours
3 September 2008 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

I had the opportunity to view the film Choke at Columbia College Chicago for a screening which held a Q&A with the main actor of the film, Sam Rockwell; so being that I read the novel before as well, I would like to share my take on the film.

No synopsis here; read the one that IMDb's.

If you have read the Palahniuk novel Choke, then you should expect that this 90 minute film cannot hold all of the sexual intensity (and comical vulgarity) that the novel had the space to provide for. Do not get me wrong--this film is very funny and Sam Rockwell is, as usual, superb in the anti-hero role that he's played so well in other films.

My one (and major) problem with the film is the fact that it was 90 minutes and wasn't pushed to be a 2 hour piece. I felt that there was so much more to delve into psychologically that Choke the novel did with sex addiction and the story and idea (will not spoil here) of who the character Victor Mancini was or thinks he is. Rockwell's great acting did a lot to pick up this slag, I do have to mention.

One thing I did like, which was also done with the ending of Fight Club (another Palahniuk novel) is that (again, will not spoil here) the finish to the Choke film was more satisfying then the deus ex machina endings that Palahniuk sometimes (well, many times) does with his stories.

Kelly Macdonald, who is wonderful in anything that she is in, as well as the other supporting actors and actresses kept the story alive and in a wonderful way.

The pacing of the film as well as the narrative was very much "Palahniuk" and this is a pace and narrative that is one of a kind and most interesting to view; which is aside from the usually predictable flow of the other films of today.

I did give this movie a 7/10 but I still believe that it is a movie that should be seen by anyone who likes to laugh, especially at things they don't think they would laugh at. Also, because the overall story is hilarious and is satisfyingly unique and the acting makes the film whole, too.

And did I mention Sam Rockwell was great?

79 of 113 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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NO SERIOUSLY, every single amateur mistake possible. Count em. WestTheFest
Did anyone watch this without reading the book? annaFTW
Who would you like to see direct the next Palahniuk movie? Why-soserious
Who would have made a better Victor? mafu82
Liked The Book, Should I See The Movie? jastewart-2
which is better the book or the movie? honeyloveoxoxo
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