6.2/10
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75 user 63 critic

Mad City (1997)

PG-13 | | Crime, Drama, Thriller | 7 November 1997 (USA)
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A disgruntled security guard holds a school trip group hostage, while a news reporter forms a bond with him.

Director:

Costa-Gavras

Writers:

Tom Matthews (screenplay), Tom Matthews (story) | 1 more credit »
1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
John Travolta ... Sam
Dustin Hoffman ... Brackett
Mia Kirshner ... Laurie
Alan Alda ... Kevin Hollander
Robert Prosky ... Lou Potts
Blythe Danner ... Mrs. Banks
William Atherton ... Dohlen
Ted Levine ... Lemke
Tammy Lauren ... Miss Rose
William O'Leary ... CTN Junior Executive
Raymond J. Barry ... Dobbins
Lucinda Jenney ... Jenny
Akosua Busia ... Diane
Ebbe Roe Smith ... Bartholomew
Bingwa Bingwa ... Nat Jackson
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Storyline

Sam Baily, upset over losing his job, takes a natural history museum hostage. Max Brackett, journalist, is in the museum when this occurs, and gets the scoop. The story spreads nation wide, and soon it is all anyone talks about. The story itself is the news, not the reason why or the real people behind it. Written by <freckles@vivid.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

One man will make a mistake. The other will make it a spectacle. See more »

Genres:

Crime | Drama | Thriller

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for depiction of a hostage situation, including violence and brief language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

7 November 1997 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

El cuarto poder See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$50,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$4,649,742, 9 November 1997, Wide Release

Gross USA:

$10,556,196, 11 January 1998
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

DTS | Dolby Digital | SDDS

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The pastor in the news montage is an actual pastor of the church where the filming took place for his brief interview. The crew was filming, he was watching and was talking with one of the assistant directors, who then invited him to appear in the movie. He had no prior acting experience. See more »

Quotes

Lou Potts: Jeez, I sent you to cover a piece of fluff, and you come back with a hostage situation.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in In the Shadow of Hollywood (2000) See more »

Soundtracks

Jenny's Garden
Written and Produced by Philippe Sarde
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User Reviews

The most underrated film of 1997
28 October 1998 | by Verbal-17See all my reviews

I'll be the first one to admit that this is not a movie for

everyone- it's not your average mainstream Hollywood movie. However, it IS a brilliant, scathing satire of the media's true power in modern-day society. Instead of going for overkill like the pathetic "Natural Born Killers," this movie uses dark comedy, brilliant performances, and genuine thrills to create one of the most clever and powerful social commentaries to be seen in film in years. If you're expecting a typical Hollywood thriller with a formula plot and a nice, neat ending then you'll be disappointed, but if you're looking for a smart, powerful film with brilliant performances by Dustin Hoffman and John Travolta, then I would recommend this movie. In a time when events like the O.J. Simpson trial make the media's influence in our society more than apparent, it's refreshing to see a movie willing to stare this issue right in the face.


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