6.5/10
52,262
321 user 113 critic

Ladder 49 (2004)

PG-13 | | Action, Drama, Thriller | 1 October 2004 (USA)
Trailer
2:31 | Trailer

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ON DISC
A firefighter, injured and trapped in a burning building, has flashbacks of his life as he drifts in and out of consciousness. Meanwhile, fellow firefighters led by the Chief attempt to rescue him.

Director:

Jay Russell

Writer:

Lewis Colick
1 win & 6 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Joaquin Phoenix ... Jack Morrison
John Travolta ... Captain Mike Kennedy
Jacinda Barrett ... Linda Morrison
Robert Patrick ... Lenny Richter
Morris Chestnut ... Tommy Drake
Billy Burke ... Dennis Gauquin
Balthazar Getty ... Ray Gauquin
Tim Guinee ... Tony Corrigan
Kevin Chapman ... Frank Mckinny
Jay Hernandez ... Keith Perez
Kevin Daniels ... Don Miller
Steve Maye Steve Maye ... Pete Lamb
Robert Lewis ... Ed Reilly (as Robert Logan Lewis)
Brooke Hamlin ... Katie Morrison
Spencer Berglund Spencer Berglund ... Nicky Morrison
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Storyline

Under the watchful eye of his mentor Captain Mike Kennedy, probationary firefighter Jack Morrison matures into a seasoned veteran at a Baltimore fire station. Jack has reached a crossroads, however, as the sacrifices he's made have put him in harm's way innumerable times and significantly impacted his relationship with his wife and kids. Responding to the worst blaze in his career, he becomes trapped inside a 20-story building. And as he reflects on his life, now Deputy Chief Kennedy frantically coordinates the effort to save him.

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

A bond forged by fire is never broken. See more »

Genres:

Action | Drama | Thriller

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for intense fire and rescue situations, and for language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

1 October 2004 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Brigada 49 See more »

Filming Locations:

Baltimore, Maryland, USA See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$55,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$22,088,204, 3 October 2004, Wide Release

Gross USA:

$74,541,707, 25 February 2005

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$102,332,848, 30 June 2005
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

DTS | Dolby Digital | SDDS

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

The Seagrave fire truck was made in Clintonville, WI. This company also made the truck seen in Backdraft See more »

Goofs

When Chief Kennedy is talking to trapped Jack Morrison on the radio from outside the building, when showing Jack trapped in the burning building, the type of radio Chief Kennedy is using changes multiple times. Sometime Kennedy is talking on a portable radio with no mic attached to it, and sometimes he is talking on a portable radio with a speaker mic attached to it, and is holding the mic in his hand. However it is common for the BCFD to run on both a TAC channel and the communications channel therefore causing a chief to have 2 radios. See more »

Quotes

Dennis Gauquin: [bringing beer to the table] Here we go, green beers all around.
Linda Morrison: I'm good, thanks.
Dennis Gauquin: Uh, Linda? It's Saint Paddy's Day, everyone drinks.
Linda Morrison: It's okay, I'm not drinking, I'll just have a diet coke.
Dennis Gauquin: What, are you pregnant?
[long silence from Linda]
Jack Morrison: [Jack looks incredulously at Linda who nods] What? You're kidding!
Linda Morrison: Baby, I was gonna wait and tell you tonight. I wanted to surprise you!
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Connections

Referenced in The Making of 'Ladder 49' (2004) See more »

Soundtracks

""Life
Written by Trent Reznor
Mixed by Trent Reznor
Produced by Inter-scope Records
Performed by Nine Inch Nails for Quake 1996 Soundtrack
See more »

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User Reviews

 
a film that overcomes its clichés
25 September 2005 | by Buddy-51See all my reviews

Joaquin Phoenix gives a moving performance in "Ladder 49," playing a Baltimore firefighter who goes from rookie to 10-year veteran in the course of the story.

Although its chief selling point is its spectacular - but never hyperbolic - fire sequences, "Ladder 49" is actually at its most compelling when it focuses on the struggle firemen go through trying to balance their high risk occupation with their role as husband and father.

In addition to Phoenix, who brings a self-effacing strength and heroism to his character, there are fine performances by John Travolta as the captain of the station, and Jacinda Barrett as Phoenix's understanding but understandably concerned wife.

In the first half of the film, the screenplay threatens to erupt into a raging inferno of stereotypes and clichés, as the characters take an occasional time out from firefighting for puppy love romance at the supermarket, frat boy antics at the fire station and domestic squabbles involving neglected wives and children at the old homestead. But about halfway through the film, the deeper themes rise to the surface and "Ladder 49" begins to explore complex issues in a mature way. The quiet scenes between Phoenix and Travolta, and Phoenix and Barrett are surprisingly subtle, thoughtful and intelligently written.

It takes a while to get there, but "Ladder 49" turns out to be a tribute worthy of its subject.


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