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The Manchurian Candidate (2004)

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In the midst of the Gulf War, soldiers are kidnapped and brainwashed for sinister purposes.

Director:

Jonathan Demme

Writers:

Richard Condon (novel), George Axelrod | 2 more credits »
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Popularity
2,352 ( 24)
Nominated for 1 Golden Globe. Another 1 win & 11 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Jeffrey Wright ... Al Melvin
Pablo Schreiber ... Eddie Ingram
Anthony Mackie ... Robert Baker
Dorian Missick ... Owens
Jose Pablo Cantillo ... Villalobos
Teddy Dunn ... Wilson
Joaquin Perez-Campbell Joaquin Perez-Campbell ... Atkins
Tim Artz Tim Artz ... Jameson
Denzel Washington ... Ben Marco
Robyn Hitchcock Robyn Hitchcock ... Laurent Tokar
Liev Schreiber ... Raymond Shaw
Antoine Taylor Antoine Taylor ... Boy Scout #1
Joseph Alessi Joseph Alessi ... Boy Scout #2
Raymond Anthony Thomas ... Scout Dad (as Ray Anthony Thomas)
Bill Irwin ... Scoutmaster
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Storyline

When his army unit was ambushed during the first Gulf War, Sergeant Raymond Shaw saved his fellow soldiers just as his commanding officer, then-Captain Ben Marco, was knocked unconscious. Brokering the incident for political capital, Shaw eventually becomes a vice-presidential nominee, while Marco is haunted by dreams of what happened -- or didn't happen -- in Kuwait. As Marco (now a Major) investigates, the story begins to unravel, to the point where he questions if it happened at all. Is it possible the entire unit was kidnapped and brainwashed to believe Shaw is a war hero as part of a plot to seize the White House? Some very powerful people at Manchurian Global corporation appear desperate to stop him from finding out. Written by A Prentiss

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

....is anyone seeing the truth? See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

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

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Official Sites:

Paramont [United States]

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

30 July 2004 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Der Manchurian Kandidat See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$80,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$20,018,620, 1 August 2004, Wide Release

Gross USA:

$65,955,630

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$96,105,964
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

When Raymond Shaw (Liev Schreiber) is talking with Ben (Denzel Washington) in his election headquarters office, he says, "...when we were in Kuwait..." but slurs the word to sound very much like "Korea". The original movie had the soldiers serving in (and abducted from) South Korea. See more »

Goofs

In the opening scene where the "Lost Patrol" is ambushed, Captain Marco is shown driving the truck while Sergeant Shaw is riding in the passenger seat. This is highly unusual in Army doctrine, as the senior most ranking individual will ride as the vehicle commander, sitting in the passenger seat. This is also true as an Officer, generally, will not engage targets on the mounted machine gun. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Ben Marco: So why don't we just go directly right up in this route, straight in...
Laurent Tokar: Yes, I see the Captain enjoys the road less-traveled.
Ben Marco: No, the Captain enjoys not going down the highway, draggin' his ass so every Tom, Dick, Gaddafi can take a whack at it.
See more »

Connections

References The Twilight Zone (1959) See more »

Soundtracks

Bambalance
by Alley Deheza, Claudia Deheza & Phillip Porter Wann
Performed by On! Air! Library! (as On!Air!Library!)
Courtesy of The Arena Rock Recording Company
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Nice Running-Mate to the Original "Candidate"
2 January 2005 | by PlacematSee all my reviews

After achieving only so-so results in reworking an old classic with the timid "The Truth About Charlie," director Jonathan Demme confidently updates "The Manchurian Candidate." Here he prevents the viewer from being distracted into keeping active count of the differences between his film and the original; the viewer can relax and watch an "original" film from the beginning. Demme immediately establishes his own distinctive approach: Bring characterization to the foreground. The original was compelling mainly due to its novel and intricate plot, but the acting was no-frills. Demme and his actors -- Denzel Washington, Meryl Streep, Liev Schreiber (and even minor players like Jeffrey Wright) -- create characters that are fleshed-out and human. They are far from the chess pieces of the original and thus better draw us into the film, offering the viewer an emotional entry point and a rooting human interest from beginning to end. While not superior to the original -- conspiracies in of themselves simply have lost their ability to shock these days -- the new "Candidate" achieves its own success by being a rare thriller: one that is emotionally moving.


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