6.6/10
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The Pelican Brief (1993)

PG-13 | | Crime, Drama, Mystery | 17 December 1993 (USA)
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A law student uncovers a conspiracy, putting herself and others in danger.

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(book), (screenplay)
1 win & 2 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
... Darby Shaw
... Gray Grantham
... Thomas Callahan
... Gavin Vereek
... Fletcher Coal
... FBI Director Denton Voyles (as James B. Sikking)
... Bob Gminski
... President
... Khamel
... Justice Rosenberg
... Smith Keen
... Marty Velmano
... Stump
... Edwin Sneller
... Matthew Barr
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Storyline

Two Supreme Court Justices have been killed. Now a college professor, who clerked for one of the two men and who is also having an affair with one of his students, is given a brief by her that states who probably wanted to see these two men dead. He then gives it to one of his friends, who works for the FBI. When the FBI director reads it, he is fascinated by it. One of the president's men who read it is afraid that if it ever got out, the president could be smeared. So he advises the president to tell the director to drop it, which he does. But later the professor and the girl were out and he was drunk and when he refused to give her the keys, she stepped out of the car. When he started it, it blew up. She then discovers that her place has been burglarized and what was taken were her computer and her disks. Obviously, her brief has someone agitated. She then turns to her boyfriend's friend at the FBI. He agrees to come meet her but before he does, someone shoots him and takes his ... Written by rcs0411@yahoo.com

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Two Supreme Court Justices have been assassinated. One lone law student has stumbled upon the truth. An investigative journalist wants her story. Everybody else wants her dead. See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for momentary language and some violence | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

17 December 1993 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

El informe Pelícano  »

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Box Office

Budget:

$45,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$16,864,404, 19 December 1993, Wide Release

Gross USA:

$100,768,056

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$195,268,056
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

One of three movies that feature Julia Roberts and Sam Shepard in the same cast. The other two movies are Steel Magnolias (1989) and August: Osage County (2013). See more »

Goofs

The recording of Darby's phone call does not match the actual conversation. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Justice Rosenberg: Any of those signs got my name on 'em?
Gray Grantham: Quite a few.
Justice Rosenberg: What do they say?
Gray Grantham: The usual: Death to Rosenberg, Retire Rosenberg, Cut off the oxygen.
Justice Rosenberg: [laughs] That's my favorite. Of course you, Mr Grantham, did pretty good by me your last time out: Rosenberg equals the government over business, the individual over government, the environment over everything. And the Indians? Oh, give 'em whatever they want.
Gray Grantham: Well with all due respects sir, that wasn't my line, that was a quote.
Justice Rosenberg: From one of your...
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Connections

Featured in The Tonight Show with Jay Leno: Episode #22.20 (2013) See more »

Soundtracks

Blues For Carol
Written and Performed by Clarence Hollimon
Courtesy of Black Top Records
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
Pakula at his best....I love this movie
17 January 2008 | by See all my reviews

This is just a great 'whodunit' legal thriller. Gripping, intelligent, acting is superb, the story is well constructed and builds in this beautiful crescendo. It' a huge cast and everyone is perfectly suited for their role. It moves beautifully, it flows like a movie should flow. I can't find any real flaw worth sharing. Just isn't there. I think it sets up Denzel Washington to continue in his escalating career as a wonderful character actor, a huge movie star, a big talent. Tony Goldwyn, since GHOST has this tendency to play the 'bad guy' but what can I say, he's good in this film too. Robert Culp, I love his impossible character. Julia Roberts is wonderful as the young starry-eyed law student who stumbles upon things bigger than anything she ever imagined. I loved every moment of the film. I recommend it to anyone who enjoys good solid film making. It should be used in teaching film - how to construct a story, how to keep the story one step ahead of the audience, making it suspenseful and exciting without having to resort to unnecessary violence or sex to make a movie work. It almost breaks through 'formula' scripts as suggested by the pundits who often don't have their finger on the pulse of what audiences want. It's one of the few films that when ever on television draws me in again and again and again!


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