An American master chemist plans to score big on a once in a lifetime drug deal. All does not go as planned and he is soon entangled in a web of deceit.

Director:

Ronny Yu

Writer:

Stel Pavlou
1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Samuel L. Jackson ... Elmo McElroy
Nigel Whitmey ... L.A. Highway Patrol
Robert Jezek Robert Jezek ... Priest
Emily Mortimer ... Dakota Parker
Meat Loaf ... The Lizard
Jake Abraham Jake Abraham ... Konokko
Mac McDonald ... Mr. Davidson
Aaron Swartz Aaron Swartz ... Mr. Yuri
David Webber ... Mr. Jones
Michael J. Reynolds ... Mr. Escobar
Sonny Muslim Sonny Muslim ... Boy in Plane
Barbara Barnes Barbara Barnes ... Boy's Mother
Junix Inocian ... Mr. Ho-Fat
Robert Carlyle ... Felix DeSouza
Paul Barber ... Frederick
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Storyline

Elmo McElroy is a streetwise American master chemist who heads to England to sell his special new formula - a powerful, blue concoction guaranteed to take you to 'the 51st state.' McElroy's new product delivers a feeling 51 times more powerful than any thrill, any pleasure, any high in history. But his plans for a quick, profitable score go comically awry when he gets stuck in Liverpool with an unlikely escort and his ex-girlfriend and becomes entangled in a bizarre web of double-dealing and double-crosses.

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

In a world of shady characters and dirty deals, this is just business as usual. See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

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

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Samuel L. Jackson became a Liverpool FC fan after starring in this film. See more »

Goofs

During the car chase, McElroy and DeSuza are trapped in an alley by an unmarked police car. The police car pulls up along side a parked car, but in a subsequent camera shot, the parked car is gone. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Elmo: I mean, rules are like, arbitrary, you know. Made up for people who believe in fairy tales like, you know, like Santa Claus. Hey, but not us, right? I mean, we know what's important. There's a war going on, man. A war. Ain't that a bitch?
[cop sucks his teeth]
Elmo: I just graduated today, man. With honors. Got my degree in pharmacology. I'm licensed. Look, if you write me up on this drug charge, I won't be able to practice. So what we're talking about here is, is my life. The rest of it.
[...]
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Crazy Credits

Shortly after the credits start there is a short segment with Elmo on the Golf Course outside the castle on the post card See more »

Connections

Featured in HBO First Look: Formula 51 (2002) See more »

Soundtracks

Leave Home
Written by Simmons / Rowlands / Baxter
Published by Universal/MCA Music Ltd. & Deconstruction Songs Ltd./
BMG Music Publishing Ltd./Musik-Edition Discoton GmbH, administered by BMG Music Publishing Ltd.
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User Reviews

Carlyle, Jackson and Mortimer being awesome
26 August 2003 | by silvacodySee all my reviews

This movie was excellent.

Elmo (Samuel L.) is a chemist who travels to Britain to market a new drug, meeting Felix DeSouza (Robert Carlyle) and Dakota (Emily Mortimer) in his adventures.

I'd seen Emily Mortimer in The Kid, but that hadn't prepared me for what an excellent actor she is. In the 51st State, she plays an assassin who needs to make one more kill before she's free of her contract. She's a strong female lead who doesn't have to spout off feminist lines or practise 'girl power' to be kickass - she just is.

Robert Carlyle fits right into the role of a loveable larrakin whose main aim is to watch the soccer. Samuel L is a cool mofo as usual, playing a genius with an interesting line of work.

The plot was interesting, the one liners hilarious and the action entertaining, and with some smaller roles played by Rhys Ifans and Meatloaf, I can't fault this movie at all.


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Frequently Asked Questions

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Details

Country:

UK | Canada

Language:

English

Release Date:

18 October 2002 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Formula 51 See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$27,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$2,817,719, 20 October 2002

Gross USA:

$5,204,007

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$12,881,605
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital | SDDS | DTS

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »

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