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Death Warrant (1990)

In a violent and corrupt prison, decorated cop Louis Burke must infiltrate the jail to find answers to a number of inside murders. What he finds is a struggle of life and death tied in to his own past.


Deran Sarafian


David S. Goyer




Cast overview, first billed only:
Jean-Claude Van Damme ... Louis Burke
Robert Guillaume ... Hawkins
Cynthia Gibb ... Amanda Beckett
George Dickerson George Dickerson ... Tom Vogler
Art LaFleur ... Sergeant DeGraf
Patrick Kilpatrick ... Christian 'The Sandman' Naylor
Joshua John Miller ... Douglas Tisdale (as Joshua Miller)
Hank Stone Hank Stone ... Romaker (as Hank Woessner)
Conrad Dunn Conrad Dunn ... Konefke (as George Jenesky)
Jack Bannon ... Ben Keane
Abdul Salaam El Razzac ... Priest
Armin Shimerman ... Dr. Gottesman
John Lantz John Lantz ... Sam Waldon
Hans Howes ... Guard Keller
Harry Waters Jr. ... Jersey


The Canadian policeman Louis Burke is assigned in a jail to investigate some murders of prisoners and jailors. When in jail, Lois, using his outstandings martial arts, is able to save his life and make himself respected in that violent world. At last, helped by two another prisoners, he succeeds in finding the truth about the dreadful crimes. Written by Tognacci Sebastiano <seblog@maya.dei.unipd.it>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


In "Bloodsport" and "Kickboxer" he won it all, now there are no rules, no escape, and NOBODY'S playing games!


R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Did You Know?


Filmed before Lionheart (1990) despite being released after. Indeed, the film was delayed pending a decision over whether Cannon Films or Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer/United Artists should distribute. See more »


In the beginning of the movie Burke shoots the Sandman several times in the chest. Later in the movie when the Sandman first attacks Burke when being held up in chains, we see the Sandman leaving the room with his shirt open and bares a chest with no bullets scars. See more »


Christian 'The Sandman' Naylor: I'm the Sandman, you can't kill me.
See more »

Alternate Versions

The film was cut to receive an M rating in Australia for its theatrical release. The cuts were later restored for an uncut R rated video release. See more »


References Star Trek: The Original Series (1966) See more »


Bring Me a Dream
Written by Martha Davis and Gary Chang
Performed by Craig Thomas
Produced by Gary Chang and Curt Taylor
See more »

User Reviews

JCVD jailhouse rock
23 June 2020 | by dworldeaterSee all my reviews

Death Warrant is a pretty action packed prison movie starring "The Muscles From Brussels" Jean Claude Van Damme. JCVD goes deep undercover to investigate the mysterious deaths of prisoners to unveil a more sinister agenda, he must fight to bring this to light and for his life. JCVD is actually a good actor now, back then not so much. Even so with all of his awesomely bad delivery of lines like "I don't pay, I don't punk" and "I hear, that a lot of guys are dying" only add to my enjoyment of the movie. Uber super villain The Sandman, who is a serial killer that is seemingly unstoppable as Jason Voorhees brings a horror/slasher element that draws certain similarities to The Hero And The Terror And Cobra. Our hero Burke(JCVD) has his hands full and even with his karate and steroids is the underdog in this prison actioner. Overall, Death Warrant is definitely dated and a bit cheesy, but I say that in the best possible way as I am nostolgic for this era of action movies and love to revisit them. Death Warrant is one of my favorite of JCVD's early action flicks.

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Release Date:

14 September 1990 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Dusted See more »


Box Office


$4,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$5,019,902, 16 September 1990

Gross USA:


Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

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Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:




Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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