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The Ninth Gate (1999)

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A rare book dealer, while seeking out the last two copies of a demon text, gets drawn into a conspiracy with supernatural overtones.

Director:

Roman Polanski

Writers:

Arturo Pérez-Reverte (novel) (as Arturo Perez-Reverte), John Brownjohn (screenplay) | 2 more credits »
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Popularity
2,480 ( 181)
1 win & 4 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Johnny Depp ... Dean Corso
Frank Langella ... Boris Balkan
Lena Olin ... Liana Telfer
Emmanuelle Seigner ... The Girl
Barbara Jefford ... Baroness Kessler
Jack Taylor ... Victor Fargas
José López Rodero José López Rodero ... Pablo & Pedro Ceniza / 1st & 2nd Workmen (as Jose Lopez Rodero)
Tony Amoni Tony Amoni ... Liana's Bodyguard
James Russo ... Bernie
Willy Holt Willy Holt ... Andrew Telfer
Allen Garfield ... Witkin
Jacques Dacqmine ... Old Man
Joe Sheridan ... Old Man's Son
Rebecca Pauly Rebecca Pauly ... Daughter-In-Law
Catherine Benguigui Catherine Benguigui ... Concierge
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Storyline

In New York, the money-driven dealer Dean Corso is a rare-books expert and partner of Bernie, who owns a bookstore. He is contacted by the renowned collector of books about the devil Boris Balkan, who has just acquired the rare The Nine Gates of the Kingdom of Shadows from the collector Andrew Telfer, to verify whether his book is authentic or a forgery. Balkan explains that the book was written by the writer Aristide Torchia, in 1666, with Lucifer and he was burned at the stake with his entire work. There are only three exemplars of The Nine Gates and in accordance with the legend, its nine engravings form a riddle to conjure the devil. The skeptical Corso accepts the assignment and has to fly to Sintra, Portugal, and Paris, France, to contact the owners Victor Fargas and Baroness Kessler and find the genuine exemplar for Balkan. Meanwhile, he asks Bernie to hide the rare book. Before traveling to Europe, the widow Liana Telfer wants to retrieve the book and has sex with Corso, but ... Written by Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Every book has a life of its own... See more »

Genres:

Mystery | Thriller

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for some violence and sexuality | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

France | Spain | USA

Language:

English | French | Latin | Portuguese | Spanish

Release Date:

10 March 2000 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Ninth Gate See more »

Filming Locations:

Portugal See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$38,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$6,622,518, 12 March 2000

Gross USA:

$18,661,336

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$58,401,898
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

The New York City sequences were shot in Paris, as Roman Polanski could not set foot into America, because he was still wanted for his 1977 pedophilic sex crime charges, for drugging and raping the thirteen-year-old Samantha Gailey. The exterior locations were re-dressed with American-related details, and the skyscraper seen in the opening, and in Balkan's office, were Translite material taken from Manhattan. See more »

Goofs

When Corso goes to the New York City Library for research, he pulls a copy of Books in Print from the shelf. All major libraries have used CDs of this reference guide for years. Also, he finds an illustration from the book he is researching. Books in Print never printed an illustration. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Dean Corso: It's an impressive collection. You have some very rare editions here. Are you sure you want to sell them all?
Old Man's Son: They're of no use to father. Not anymore. Not since he's been this way. His library was his whole world. Now it's just a painful memory.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Francisco Maltes (2008) See more »

Soundtracks

Sete saias
Performed by Santinho
Arranged by Wolfgang Gerhard
Courtesy of LaserLight Digital by Arrangement with Source/Q
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

At last, something interesting ...
2 June 2001 | by scythermanSee all my reviews

Congratulations and thanks to Polanski & Co. for making a truly enjoyable film.(and that's something considering the kind of drivel that is available for our entertainment these days!) For those who keep moaning about being left-out of the ending or the meaning of the film-stick to your Disney's Classics or else grow up, read more books and be more imaginative! These people probably need a on-line walkthrough to go to their own toilet and cant appreciate a little mystery or enigma! Let's face it-the world's a mysterious place and you cant expect neat and convenient signposts! The film as I understood it: Unknown ages ago Satan had given mankind a "manual" describing how to acquire godly powers, in the form of "Delomelanicon", a legendary scroll written by no other than "Louis Cyphre" himself! A Venetian demonologist, Aristide Torchia, acquired a copy of this work and adapted its text and engravings to a book he called "The nine gates to the kingdom of shadows". Torchia deliberately hid the true knowledge of the "Delomelanicon" in three variations of his book-a measure to weed out the lamebrains who read the book "just for a Sunday evening". Only three copies survived his torture and eventual burning at a stake.It is of these volumes that Balkan speaks of in the film. Corso is a cynic and only realize the true significance of the "Nine gates" as he research for Balkan's assignment. In the end it becomes an obsession for him, too. As for the ending ... seeing the last engraving Corso finally realises the true meaning of his quest and he is magically transported to the Devil's castle for an audience with Satan himself. From the choice of actors and the musical score to the locations, the use of SFX, visual metaphors ... "The ninth gate" excels. Polanski's vision is unique, to put it mildly, and the acting by Depp,Lagella and Jafford adds realism to the the quirky characters. Films of such delectable european flavour are indeed rare in these days of uninspired, talentless films. Please dont give us a sequel("Return to the ninth gate", "The ninth gate-part 2") ! For those who found the film to be "heavy" - give up on the original story "The Club Dumas" by Arturo Peres-Reverte ... you will be confused some more. As for the rest, please find a copy and enjoy since it is much more detailed than the story and have those cool engravings!!!!


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