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eXistenZ (1999)

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A game designer on the run from assassins must play her latest virtual reality creation with a marketing trainee to determine if the game has been damaged.

Director:

David Cronenberg
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Popularity
4,100 ( 134)
3 wins & 8 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Jennifer Jason Leigh ... Allegra Geller
Jude Law ... Ted Pikul
Ian Holm ... Kiri Vinokur
Willem Dafoe ... Gas
Don McKellar ... Yevgeny Nourish
Callum Keith Rennie ... Hugo Carlaw
Christopher Eccleston ... Seminar Leader
Sarah Polley ... Merle
Robert A. Silverman ... D'Arcy Nader
Oscar Hsu ... Chinese Waiter
Kris Lemche ... Noel Dichter
Vik Sahay ... Male Assistant
Kirsten Johnson ... Female Assistant
James Kirchner James Kirchner ... Landry
Balázs Koós Balázs Koós ... Male Volunteer
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Storyline

Allegra Geller, the leading game designer in the world, is testing her new virtual reality game, eXistenZ with a focus group. As they begin, she is attacked by a fanatic assassin employing a bizarre organic gun. She flees with a young marketing trainee, Ted Pikul, who is suddenly assigned as her bodyguard. Unfortunately, her pod, an organic gaming device that contains the only copy of the eXistenZ game program, is damaged. To inspect it, she talks Ted into accepting a gameport in his own body so he can play the game with her. The events leading up to this, and the resulting game lead the pair on a strange adventure where reality and their actions are impossible to determine from either their own or the game's perspective. Written by Kenneth Chisholm <kchishol@execulink.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

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Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for strong sci-fi violence and gore, and for language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

UK | France | Canada

Language:

English

Release Date:

23 April 1999 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Existenz See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$15,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$810,262, 25 April 1999

Gross USA:

$2,856,712

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$2,856,712
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (workprint)

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

David Cronenberg's first original screenplay since Videodrome (1983). See more »

Goofs

When Pikul is extracting the tooth from Allegra's shoulder, the sleeve of her top is rolled down. In the next shot after it comes out, her shoulder is covered again, but Pikul's hand resting on it hasn't moved. (There are deliberate costume discontinuities in this movie, when the characters shift in and out of eXistenZ, but this isn't one of them.) See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Seminar Leader: eXistenZ. Written like this. One word. Small 'E', capital 'X', capital 'Z'. 'eXistenZ'. It's new, it's from Antenna Research, and it's here... right now.
See more »

Connections

Featured in WatchMojo: Top 10 Best David Cronenberg Movies (2017) See more »

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User Reviews

 
I put a spell on you because you're mine
1 January 2017 | by DemetriusAlrugoIIISee all my reviews

This is a movie which perfectly captures your state of mind as you slowly awake from a dream. What you thought were true realities while you were asleep become increasingly fraudulent the more you process them logically and consciousness rears its head, paradoxically there still remains a sense of legitimacy to the situations and ideas that had manifested themselves in your mind so abrasively as you slept. On one plain plane the players, like chronic somnambulists, know they are in a game yet their bodies and minds continue to act and think in ways that they cannot predict or control. They give in to the confusion because it offers a break from conscious thinking and inhibitions and opens up previously unknown avenues of imagination. What at first seems incoherent in this movie becomes more and more believable as images, characters, phrases, etc repeat themselves in fragments that you slowly begin to recognize subconsciously. Everything starts to make vague sense yet you won't be able to put your umbilical cord on exactly what it is the dream (or your own unconscious mind) is trying to tell you. The story operates in the same way that the plot of a dream does,gliding from one situation to another seemingly at random, you cannot remember exactly where you came from, how long you'd been there, or why you'd been there but you gain a sense of reverence for the places you've been and the people you've met because they all make strange cosmic sense to you, they embody all of your deepest fears and desires so honestly that you cannot help but be grateful to them. Forget any coherent message or intelligent thought when you experience this movie because they are unnecessary to dream with.

For maximum harmonic understanding, ingest a handful of dubiously obtained Armenian sleeping pills, hang upside down from the ceiling of your lair whilst double fisting two bloated goat stomachs full of your great grandmother's long-frozen/now-thawed bReaSt miLk. Play the movie backwards with the sound going forwards on a loop for as long as it takes to you know what with you know who in you know where you tyrant demon basterd….


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