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Payback (1999)

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After a successful heist, Porter is shot by his wife and his best friend. They leave him there to die but when he recovers, he seeks revenge and wants his share of the money.

Director:

Brian Helgeland

Writers:

Donald E. Westlake (novel) (as Richard Stark), Brian Helgeland (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
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Popularity
2,657 ( 974)
2 wins & 2 nominations. See more awards »

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Porter is shot by his wife and best friend and is left to die. When he survives he plots revenge.

Director: Brian Helgeland
Stars: Mel Gibson, Gregg Henry, Maria Bello
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Mel Gibson ... Porter
Gregg Henry ... Val Resnick
Maria Bello ... Rosie
David Paymer ... Arthur Stegman
Bill Duke ... Det. Hicks
Deborah Kara Unger ... Mrs. Lynn Porter
John Glover ... Phil
William Devane ... Carter
Lucy Liu ... Pearl (as Lucy Alexis Liu)
Jack Conley ... Det. Leary
Kris Kristofferson ... Bronson
Mark Alfa Mark Alfa ... Johnny's Friend #2
Kwame Amoaku ... Radioman
Justin Ashforth ... Michael, Bartender #1
Len Bajenski Len Bajenski ... Fairfax Bodyguard #1
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Storyline

Porter is bad, but his neighbours are worse. Street-wise and tough, an ex-marine, he is betrayed by a one-time partner, and shot in the back by his junkie wife. He survives and returns, looking to recover his share from the robbery of an Asian crime gang. The money has passed into the hands of "the Outfit", a slick gangster organisation that runs the city. He has to make his way through a world populated by heroin dealers, prostitutes, sado-masochists, gunmen and crooked cops, a place where torture is a way of life. His only friend is a former employer, a prostitute, and her loyalty is in question, given she now works for the Outfit. He makes good early progress, but then falls into the hands of Fairfax, the crime boss. Written by Kwah-LeBaire

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Get ready to cheer for the bad guy! See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for strong violence, language, and drug and sexual content | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

5 February 1999 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Porter See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$90,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$21,221,526, 7 February 1999, Wide Release

Gross USA:

$81,526,121

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$161,626,121
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (director's cut)

Sound Mix:

DTS | Dolby Digital | SDDS

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

The restoration of the Director's Cut took place in 2005. Most of the original elements of the film were not preserved, so Editor Kevin Stitt and Brian Helgeland had to make do with what was preserved from the original film stock, and had to reassemble the film that way, without the use of Avid film editing. At the same time, the blue tint, in which the theatrical version looked visually, was removed, for more vivid color tones and contrast, but still preserving some of the grittiness of the theatrical cut. See more »

Goofs

When Porter is in the bar talking with the hooker asking where he can find Rosie. The cash on the bar changes front to back several times while the hooker takes the bill from Porter. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Porter: [voiceover] GSW: that's what the hospitals call it: gunshot wound. Doctor has to report it to the police. That makes it hard for guys in my line to get what I call, quality health care.
See more »

Alternate Versions

The UK cinema version and all subsequent video and DVD releases were cut by 5 seconds to remove the use of a butterfly knife. The Blu-ray reinstates the previously cut footage. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Richard Roeper & the Movies: Edge of Darkness (2010) See more »

Soundtracks

Anniversary Song
Music by Iosif Ivanovici
Arranged by Saul Chaplin
Lyrics by Al Jolson and Saul Chaplin
Performed by Chris Boardman
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more »

User Reviews

 
A vicarious experience
12 March 2007 | by lastliberalSee all my reviews

What can I say. This movie is the one to watch when you are angry with someone. Through Mel Gibson, you can experience your anger and frustration and get that vicarious revenge.

Gibson's character just wanted what was due; nothing more or less. He methodically went up the line to get it. He was clever and ruthless. In the end...well, I won't tell you that. I have to say that I got the best of all those who wronged me through Porter.

With the possible exception of Braveheart, this is Gibson's best. He makes Richard Stark's book come to life on the big screen in a way that it is a pleasure to watch again and again. And, hey, it has Maria Bello, and that gives it an additional star.

Besides, it's cheap therapy.


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