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Gamer (2009)

5.8
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Ratings: 5.8/10 from 94,597 users   Metascore: 27/100
Reviews: 234 user | 175 critic | 13 from Metacritic.com

In a future mind-controlling game, death row convicts are forced to battle in a 'doom'-type environment. Convict Kable, controlled by Simon, a skilled teenage gamer, must survive 30 sessions in order to be set free. Or won't he?

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(as Neveldine) , (as Taylor)
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Title: Gamer (2009)

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Ramsey Moore ...
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Humanz Brother (as Chris 'Ludacris' Bridges)
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Geek Leader
Dan Callahan ...
Backup Geek
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Scotch
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Storyline

Set in a future-world where humans can control other humans in mass-scale, multi-player online gaming environments, a star player from a game called "Slayers" looks to regain his independence while taking down the game's mastermind. Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

game | convict | death | battle | online gaming | See more »

Taglines:

In the near future, you don't live to play... you'll play to live. See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for frenetic sequences of strong brutal violence throughout, sexual content, nudity and language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

4 September 2009 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Citizen Game  »

Box Office

Budget:

$50,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

£641,568 (UK) (18 September 2009)

Gross:

$20,488,579 (USA) (2 October 2009)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

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Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

In an unusual move, the film was actually shot for the 2.40:1 aspect ratio. However, the first edited scenes were done with the unmatted image, but subsequently masked to 2.40:1. The directors preferred the 1.85:1 version, which allowed the audience to see more information and accommodated the handheld camerawork better, and so the aspect ratio was switched. Miraculously, no boom mics needed to be digitally erased from the previously-unused picture information. See more »

Goofs

In one scene, John gets some kind of brain bits in his face after a head gets blown off in front of him. A couple shots later, the bits are gone. See more »

Quotes

Ken Castle: [seeing Hackman] Look at it. The new face of Slayers. Pure, crystalized horror. Two stories high and bathed in bloody red. He is what they want.
Geek Leader: They love Kable.
Ken Castle: They do now, but when they watch their hero die right in front of their eyeballs so sharp and vivid it feels like you could reach out and touch the wet flesh, they're going to change their point of view. They'll be seduced by the power of violence; the dominance. It's human nature.
Geek Leader: Kable's made it through 28 battles. Every player in the...
[...]
See more »


Soundtracks

Sweet Dreams (Are Made of This)
Written by Annie Lennox and David A. Stewart (as David Allan Stewart)
Performed by Marilyn Manson
Courtesy of Interscope Records
Under license from Universal Music Enterprises
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

Middle of the road
12 May 2010 | by (Cleburne, TX) – See all my reviews

In a not too distant future, the world is obsessed with "Slayers", a game that allows it's players to control real death row inmates in a real world gaming environment. If they win a certain amount of games, the inmate receives a full pardon. The star inmate is Kable. He's won more games than any other "Slayer" has even come close to, and he's close to getting out. However, the game's billionaire creator, Ken Castle, has no intention of letting that happen.

Mixing elements of The Running Man with bizarre game-playing scenarios, outlandish events and a sizable chunk of social commentary, Gamer is an interesting if not always successful little action picture. The commentary on things such as people living reality through game-play and the depths to which society will sink for entertainment are on the mark. Aside from "Slayers", Castle also created an earlier game called "Society", which is sort of like "Sim City", only with real people. Gamers control people in the game and make them do whatever disgusting act they want, such as burning themselves, sex fantasies and the like. I personally felt these were the most effective segments in the film, including a perfect use of the song, "The Bad Touch".

Michael C. Hall was a big draw for me, as he is terrific on one of my favorite TV shows, Dexter. As expected, he was the standout among the cast. His Ken Castle is an over-the-top megalomaniacal nut case, and I enjoyed every moment he was on screen. Alas, he wasn't on screen as often as I expected going in. We naturally get much more of Gerard Butler, who isn't much of an actor from what I've seen. He's tolerable here, but nothing special. We also get a few smaller roles for the likes of Kyra Sedgwick, Pathology's Milo Ventimiglia, Terry Crews, who feels out of place in a non-comedic role, and terrific Drag Me to Hell actress, Alison Lohman.

The action itself is underwhelming, as it suffers from the all too common quick cutting/shaky cam routine. I have to admit, that doesn't bother me as often as it does most people, but it did here. There's also one ridiculous scene involving Kable filling up a truck's fuel tank with something other than fuel. Regardless, while a flawed film, it does have some solid material to offer. It just could have been wrapped a little tighter.


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