7.4/10
306,439
467 user 128 critic

The Rock (1996)

A mild-mannered chemist and an ex-con must lead the counterstrike when a rogue group of military men, led by a renegade general, threaten a nerve gas attack from Alcatraz against San Francisco.

Director:

Michael Bay

Writers:

David Weisberg (story), Douglas Cook (story) (as Douglas S. Cook) | 3 more credits »
Reviews
Popularity
1,272 ( 506)
Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 9 wins & 8 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Sean Connery ... John Patrick Mason
Nicolas Cage ... Stanley Goodspeed
Ed Harris ... General Francis X. Hummel
John Spencer ... F.B.I. Director Womack
David Morse ... Major Tom Baxter
William Forsythe ... Ernest Paxton
Michael Biehn ... Commander Anderson
Vanessa Marcil ... Carla Pestalozzi
John C. McGinley ... Marine Captain Hendrix (as John C. Mc Ginley)
Gregory Sporleder ... Captain Frye
Tony Todd ... Captain Darrow
Bokeem Woodbine ... Sergeant Crisp
Jim Maniaci Jim Maniaci ... Private Scarpetti
Greg Collins ... Private Gamble
Brendan Kelly ... Private Cox
Learn more

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Storyline

Stanley Goodspeed, who lives in Washington, D.C., is a biochemist who works for the F.B.I. Soon after his fiancée Carla Pestalozzi announces that she is pregnant, Stanley gets a call from F.B.I. Director James Womack. Womack tells Stanley that San Francisco's Alcatraz Island has been taken hostage, along with eighty-one tourists, by Marine General Francis Xavier Hummel who, for years, has been protesting the government's refusal to pay benefits to families of war veterans who died during covert military operations. The death of his wife Barbara on March 9, 1995 drove General Hummel over the edge, and now he's holding hostages in order to get his point across. Stanley is needed because General Hummel has stolen some VX gas warheads and has announced that he will launch them onto San Francisco unless his demands are met. Stanley knows how to disarm the bombs, but he needs someone who knows Alcatraz well enough to get him inside. That man is former British Intelligence Agent John Patrick... Written by Todd Baldridge

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Alcatraz. Only one man has ever broken out. Now five million lives depend on two men breaking in. See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for strong violence, language and a sex scene | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The studio wanted this movie shot in Los Angeles, with only a handful of exteriors of Alcatraz and San Francisco to complete the illusion, but director Michael Bay refused, telling them "I gotta shoot on this island because this island is so fucking bitchin." See more »

Goofs

(at around 1h 45 mins) The launched missile is said to be launched toward a football game in Oakland. However, the next shot shows the missile flying over Candlestick Park in San Francisco, not the Oakland Colliseum. In fact, the missile is clearly shown grazing trees on top of Bayview Hill. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
General Hummel: Congressman Weaver and esteemed members of the Special Armed Services Committee, I come before you to protest a grave injustice... It has to stop.
See more »

Alternate Versions

An Arabic-dubbed version of 'The Rock' was released in the GCC countries on December 1997. A number of cuts were made and in the Arabic-dubbed version, Goodspeed and his girlfriend were actually made husband and wife. See more »

Connections

Featured in The Blockbuster Buster: Transformers (2010) See more »

Soundtracks

World Without Love
Written by John Lennon, Paul McCartney
Performed by Peter and Gordon
Courtesy of Capitol Records
Under license from EMI-Capitol Music Special Markets
See more »

User Reviews

Michael Bay's masterpiece
7 December 2001 | by ajohnwoofilmSee all my reviews

Although i have seen many of Bay's films and enjoyed most of them, nothing is in comparison to this 1996 bay area based action film. I am just curious why it is not as popular or well known as it should. Dont get me wrong, granted it is a familiar film amongst most people yet it never appears in their top ten? Currently this film sits at number 5 on mine. I felt this film carried the most wide range of cinema aspect that any action film can carry. There was a mixture of minor romance, drama, and comedy which is why i am pleased to see that the criterion collection values it. Apparently the AFI probably wont but what do they know, the most action based film they would even consider is Saving Private Ryan which was also a good film but it seemed to be more of a Drama than action even if i reconsider the opening seen. What I think Michael Bay does best it simply put, he makes his stuff cool. He chooses the right angles to show the right section of what every he is filming. You can shoot a navy seal rising from the water in many different ways but his straight on established shot as the seal so rises up and pans his weapon from left to right was amazing. It is the small things like that which eventually amounts to a great film. He doesnt only focus on the big action scenes but the minor ones as well and it work wonderfully because it keeps us all tuned for the duration of the film. It is a film that any action enthusiast would enjoy over and over again. If your considering on purchasing this on DVD, remember to shell out a few more bucks and get the Criterion Collection version, the extra money will be well spent once you see Ed Harris re-doing his takes. I must also give the writers of this film some credit because or it's several directions they went with the script while keeping action the main subject. I mainly focus on action films (although currently in film school i am considering on doing dramas) and from all the ones i had ever seen i think this film is surely the best overall, not my number 1 favorite but the overall best pick for anyone to see and i truely believe that is someone doesnt enjoy this film regardless of age, gender, etc. you have problems and something is wrong with you. And for all the people who have seen this film, i would like to ask ou to reconsider this film's greatness for what it deserves. ENJOY THE ROCK!


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Frequently Asked Questions

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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

7 June 1996 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Rock See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$75,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$25,069,525, 9 June 1996

Gross USA:

$134,069,511

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$335,062,621
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital | SDDS

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.39 : 1
See full technical specs »

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