The Manchurian Candidate

The Manchurian Candidate

Jonathan Demme (2004)

124min
15 Certificate
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Review

Our Score
It's rare for a remake to match the standard of a much lauded original, but this update of John Frankenheimer's classic 1962 psychological thriller comes pretty close. An intelligent and chillingly believable tale of brainwashing, exploitation and political corruption, it relocates the military conflict at the heart of the story from Communist Korea to the first Gulf War in Kuwait. Denzel Washington steps into Frank Sinatra's shoes, playing a tormented US Army major who unwittingly becomes the key to a complex political conspiracy. As with his Oscar-winning The Silence of the Lambs, Jonathan Demme's controlled direction is exhilarating, and he elicits brilliant performances from a fine cast. Liev Schreiber finally gets a part to sink his teeth into, as Washington's former sergeant who becomes a vice presidential candidate, but it's Meryl Streep, as Schreiber's unscrupulous senator mother, who leaves the deepest impression.

Summary

A Gulf War veteran is plagued by nightmares, convinced something strange happened to him and his comrades during the conflict. As he tries to get to the root of the problem, it becomes clear that powerful, shadowy figures in the political world do not want him to probe too deeply. Jonathan Demme's remake of the 1962 thriller, with Denzel Washington, Liev Schreiber, Meryl Streep and Jon Voight.

Cast & Crew

Bennett "Ben" Marco Denzel Washington
Senator Eleanor Prentiss Shaw Meryl Streep
Raymond Shaw Liev Schreiber
Senator Thomas Jordan Jon Voight
Rosie Kimberly Elise
Al Melvin Jeffrey Wright
Colonel Howard Ted Levine
Richard Delp Bruno Ganz
Colonel Garret Miguel Ferrer
Mark Whiting Dean Stockwell
Atticus Noyle Simon McBurney
Jocelyne Jordan Vera Farmiga
Vaughn Utly Zeljko Ivanek
Mr Secretary Roger Corman
General Sloan Charles Napier
TV commentator Al Franken
Director Jonathan Demme
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Other Information

Language: EnglishColourTheatrical distributor: UIPGuidance: Violence and swearing.Available on: video, DVD and Blu-rayReleased on: 19 Nov 2004
Drama