6.8/10
48,961
551 user 153 critic

The Pledge (2001)

Trailer
0:30 | Trailer

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A retiring police chief pledges to catch the killer of a young child.

Director:

Sean Penn

Writers:

Friedrich Dürrenmatt (book), Jerzy Kromolowski (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
Reviews
Popularity
3,474 ( 993)
1 win & 6 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Patricia Clarkson ... Margaret Larsen
Beau Daniels ... Rudy
Benicio Del Toro ... Toby Jay Wadenah
Dale Dickey ... Strom
Wendy Donaldson Wendy Donaldson ... Resort Owner (as Wendy Morrow Donaldson)
Adrien Dorval ... Sheriff (as P. Adrien Dorval)
Aaron Eckhart ... Stan Krolak
Shawn Henter Shawn Henter ... Bus Driver
Kathy Jensen Kathy Jensen ... Store Clerk
Taryn Knowles Taryn Knowles ... Ginny Larsen
Nels Lennarson ... Hank
Costas Mandylor ... Monash Deputy
J.J. McColl J.J. McColl ... Real Estate Agent
Gordon May Gordon May ... Criminologist #1
Gardiner Millar ... Deputy #3 (as Gardinar Millar)
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Storyline

The night he retires as a Nevada sheriff, Jerry Black pledges to the mother of a murdered girl that he will find the killer. Jerry doesn't believe the police arrested the right man; he discovers this is the third incident in the area in the recent past with victims young, blond, pretty, and small for their age. So he buys an old gas station in the mountains near the crimes in order to search for a tall man who drives a black station wagon, gives toy porcupines as gifts, and calls himself the wizard: clues from a drawing by the dead girl. Jerry's solitary life gives way to friendship with a woman and her small, blond daughter. Has Jerry neglected something that may prove fatal? Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Detective Jerry Black has made a promise he can't break, to catch a killer he can't find. See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for strong violence and language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

19 January 2001 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Asesino oculto See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$35,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$5,765,347, 21 January 2001, Wide Release

Gross USA:

$19,719,930, 1 April 2001

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$29,419,291, 31 December 2002
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

DTS | Dolby Digital | SDDS

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The picture was a passion project for Director Sean Penn and Jack Nicholson. Unfortunately, the screenplay was turned down by every major studio in Hollywood. Producer Elie Samaha, and his studio Franchise Pictures, who specialized in picking up screenplays in turnaround, quickly pounced on the material and signed up Penn and Nicholson for a reduced fee. The pair agreed, as long as Penn could have complete creative and casting control. See more »

Goofs

In the first shot of Jerry reading Chrissy a bedtime story, his lips do not match the words he is reading. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Jerry Black: She said it. She said it. She did.
See more »

Crazy Credits

In memory of our Brothers In Arms Michael D. Haller and Jack Nitzsche See more »

Connections

References As Good as It Gets (1997) See more »

Soundtracks

Jesus Loves me
(uncredited)
Music by William B. Bradbury and lyrics by Anna B. Warner
Performed by Pauline Roberts (Chrissy)
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Slow & Powerful
13 February 2006 | by shark-43See all my reviews

I had rather low expectations for The Pledge - even though I've admired Penn as an actor (Dead Man Walking, Racing With The Moon, etc.) I really didn't care much for his writing/directing attempts (Indian Runner and The Crossing Guard) so I finally got around to watching this on cable and I was not prepared for how intriguing, intelligent and emotionally powerful the movie was. Yes, obviously, from other people's comments, this isn't every one's cup of tea. Fine. You want quickie thriller, wall to wall action - go watch Con Air or something. Popcorn movies are fine. People need to turn off their brains and escape every now and then (Unfortunately for big budget movies - its more NOW and very rarely THEN)> So that is why I really enjoyed the slow pace and the ambiguity of the plot - it left things out there for you to find, to discover, to ponder. Nicholson - who is so capable of just phoning it in lately or just doing a gig for a paycheck (Anger Management - YIKES!!!) - but here he really delivers a strong, aching performance. He is surrounded by excellent actors (especially Del Toro, Eckhart and a very impressive tiny scene from Mickey Rourke). I know there are huge fans of the German book and the movie - I will seek them out. But I have watched this film twice and it is even more powerful the second time. One CAN be driven mad by NEVER knowing something so ghastly, something so important.


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