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Conspiracy Theory (1997)

Cast: Mel Gibson, Mel Gibson, Julia Roberts, more...
Director: Richard Donner, Richard Donner
    see all cast/crew...
Studio: Warner Home Video
Genre: Action, Chase, Quest, Chase
Running Time: 135 min.
Languages: English, French
Subtitles: English, Spanish, French
    see additional details...

Jerry Fletcher (Mel Gibson) is a New York City cab driver who seems to have absorbed every bit of crackpot information passed along as "suppressed news" that's surfaced on talk radio or the Internet in the past 20 years. Anti-United Nations militia men who are actually U.N. operatives? NASA scientists engineering earthquakes? Oliver Stone's secret life as a government agent discrediting conspiracy theorists? Jerry's heard 'em all and believes most of them, and even publishes his own journal of forbidden information, with a subscription list that now totals five people. In short, Jerry seems like just another New York City lunatic, and while he spends a fair amount of his spare time following Alice Sutton (Julia Roberts), a government attorney, Alice regards him as harmless; he once intervened while she was being mugged, and he's been acting like her benign if whacked-out protector ever since. However, one day Jerry is kidnapped and worked over by CIA operatives; he is convinced that one of the theories he uncovered must be for real -- but he has no idea which one. He tries to get Alice to help him, and before long both are drawn into a dangerous web that leads to a startling revelation of just how Jerry got this way. Mel Gibson gives a fine comic performance, and those with a taste for alternative media will have fun dissecting which of the theories Jerry spouts are "real" (or at least appeared before this film was made) and which were the invention of the screenwriters. ~ Mark Deming, All Movie Guide

GreenCine Member Reviews

Cute and shmaltzy tripe by chaosmind August 15, 2006 - 5:04 PM PDT
1 out of 1 members found this review helpful
Well done mainstream crap. If you go into this expecting anything other than a Richard Donner flick with Mel Gibson and Julia Roberts, you have noone but yourself to blame. It has all the intellectual rigor of that hideous "Oceans 11" remake (albeit quite a bit darker): models spewing unrealistic dialogue while stumbling through outrageous plot contrivances. More than competent camera work, and some interesting flashback work, but little more. I will say that Patrick Stewart has some funny bits, and that this is the most fun I've ever had watching Gibson being tortured.

Do yourself a favor and instead watch a conspiracy theory movie with the IQ cranked way up, like the original "Manchurian Candidtate," "Parallax View" or the incomparable "The Conversation." Heck, you'd even do better with that latter film's pseudo-sequel "Enemy of the State."

My theory on "Conspiracy" by cubbycreatureb December 9, 2003 - 3:55 PM PST
0 out of 2 members found this review helpful
Though I like the general premise of this movie, it seems to get a bit bogged down by its hollywood-ization, or its attempt to appeal to the masses. Also, it seems that the director is continually poking fun at conspiracy theories while trying to convey a serious thriller based on one particular conspiracy theory that needs to be taken seriously for the movie to be believed at all. I know that sounds vague, but it's hard to be too specific without giving away certain surprise elements of the plot. I do, however, think that this movie works, especially if you know a thing or two about some of the more popular conspiracy theories that are touched upon. Overall I give it a 5 out of 10 because though I think the premise is good and the overall script valid, its attempt to appeal to the general public and its inability to take itself seriously comprimises the film's quality.

GreenCine Member Rating

(Average 5.55)
128 Votes
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