6.7/10
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Apt Pupil (1998)

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A boy blackmails his neighbor after suspecting him to be a Nazi war criminal.

Director:

Writers:

(novel), (screenplay)
6 wins & 6 nominations. See more awards »

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Director: Bryan Singer
Stars: Ron Marquette, Bert Williams, Leigh Hunt
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
... Todd Bowden
... Kurt Dussander
... Joey
... Sociology Teacher
... Nightmare Victim
... Monica Bowden
... Richard Bowden
... Victor Bowden
... Agnes Bowden
David Cooley ... Gym Teacher
Blake Anthony Tibbetts ... Teammate
... Becky Trask
Katherine Malone ... Student
Grace Sinden ... Secretary
... Edward French
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Storyline

Neighborhood boy Todd Bowden (Renfro) discovers that an old man living on his block named Arthur Denker (Mackellan) is Nazi war criminal. Bowden confronts Denker and offers him a deal: Bowden will not go to the authorities if Denker tells him stories of the concentration camps in WWII. Denker agrees and Bowden starts visiting him regularly. The more stories Bowden hears, the more it affects his personality. Written by Casey Ward <ward@citizen.infi.net>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

If you don't believe in the existence of evil, you've got a lot to learn.

Genres:

Crime | Drama | Thriller

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for scenes of strong violence, language and brief sexuality | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

|

Language:

|

Release Date:

23 October 1998 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

El aprendiz  »

Filming Locations:

 »

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Box Office

Budget:

$14,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$3,583,151, 25 October 1998, Wide Release

Gross USA:

$8,838,938, 3 January 1999
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(8 channels)|

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

One of the pictures of Dussander, during World War II, was actually Heinrich Himmler, but was digitally replaced with Sir Ian McKellen's face. See more »

Goofs

At the end of the movie as Dussender lay dead in the hospital bed his pupils are constricted when in fact they should be fully dilated if were dead. See more »

Quotes

Victor Bowden: Arthur, I wonder if you'd mind if I asked you a personal question.
Kurt Dussander: Not at all.
Victor Bowden: What did you do during the war?
[Todd looks at Dussander]
Kurt Dussander: I was in the reserves, as were most young men, Victor. My poor eyesight kept me out of combat, thank God. No, I spent most of the war in a military hospital washing bed linens and nurses' uniforms.
See more »

Connections

Features I Dream of Jeannie (1965) See more »

Soundtracks

Take Me Out to the Ball Game
(uncredited)
Written by Jack Norworth and Albert von Tilzer
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User Reviews

 
Evil Feeding Evil
26 October 2004 | by See all my reviews

Apt Pupil is a movie of symbolism, it is a movie of metamorphosis, it is not a movie to be brushed off, taken lightly, nor is it to be watched if you want anything even remotely uplifting. It is a thoroughly depressing movie about corruption and the very root of evil. You'll find no plot summary here because you can scroll up slightly and find one. I can tell you Ian McKellen is one of the finest actors in the world and even solidifies that unlikely people like Brad Renfro and David Schwimmer can be incredible actors in their own rights. The movie poses several questions, almost none of which it answers and indeed might not have answers. It is, at it's core, about evil feeding into evil. The boy's evil reawakens the old man's evil, the old man's evil stokes the boy's evil and it continues to crescendo throughout coming to an incredible climax. A fascinating and thoroughly challenging movie.


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