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Gamer (2009)

5.8
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Ratings: 5.8/10 from 94,006 users   Metascore: 27/100
Reviews: 233 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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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
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Michael C. Hall personally recommended actor Sam Witwer for his role after Witwer played "Neil Perry" in Dexter (2006). See more »

Goofs

Another mistake of writing "kable" using Arabic letters is that they are not connected. In languages where Arabic letters are used for writing, letters of a word should be connected otherwise it is not readable (or very difficult to read). 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 »

Connections

Features Battlezone (1980) 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

 
Three films in one -- nuanced & stimulating in every way
5 September 2009 | by (Austin, TX) – See all my reviews

The premise of "Gamer" is resoundingly simple: What if gamers could control actual people? Coming into the theater, due to the simple premise and embarrassingly poor marketing of the film, I was expecting a brainless, adolescently indulgent action flick. What I got was a mind-blowing surprise.

"Gamer" is three films in one: (1) Subculture examination of the gamer ethos; (2) Pulse-pounding action movie; (3) Thought-provoking science fiction piece.

As others have mentioned, this film truly brings the gamer experience to the big screen. The battle shots bring MMORPG first-person shooters to real life, and the Sims/Second Life-like scenes played just as true, right down to the robotic, singlemindedly determined motion of the characters. The directors obviously spent many long hours gaming in preparation for this film (or just for fun).

As an action film, "Gamer" holds its own, delivering plenty of fights, battle scenes, and adrenaline-soaked moments. Hollywood knows how to do action, and in "Gamer" you see some of what it has learned from films like "The Matrix", "Saving Private Ryan", and others. I won't say too much, but there's a particularly juicy scene involving some kind of giant snowplow.

"Gamer" shines most brightly, and most unexpectedly, as a science fiction piece. The film interweaves themes familiar to our 2009 reality, including economic desperation, prison overcrowding, the fallout of materialism, and technology naively promoted as a panacea for society's ills.

"Gamer" shows us a society addicted to technology at the expense of facing reality. Masses of gamers, locked in adolescence or enraptured by the promise of mindless self-indulgence without consequence, living solely through their avatars. Desperate segments of society, the poor and criminal, who have surrendered control of their bodies to the will of gamers. A populace that embraces televised war games as a solution to prison overcrowding, rather than addressing the true causes of mass imprisonment. The megalomaniacal pushers of technology running largely unchecked as the masses surrender control.

Michael C. Hall delivers a breakout silver screen performance as the multifaceted Ken Castle -- after his great work in Six Feet Under, this is another power move for his career. Kyra Sedgwick nails her cougar reporter character, who begins the film as another no-conscience profiteer but becomes more through the course of the film. And Gerard Butler plays the hero archetype admirably, as every bit of the man who his spoiled teenage gamer-puppeteer cannot become.

"Gamer" may end up as a cult classic, a slowly growing mainstream success, or could stay underrated indefinitely, but it's definitely worth a view.


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