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Gamer (2009)

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In a future mind-controlling game, death row convicts are forced to battle in a 'Doom'-type environment. Convict Kable, controlled by Simon, a skilled teenage gamer, must survive thirty sessions in order to be set free. Or won't he?

Directors:

Mark Neveldine (as Neveldine), Brian Taylor (as Taylor)

Writers:

Mark Neveldine (as Neveldine), Brian Taylor (as Taylor)
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2,844 ( 486)
1 win. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Gerard Butler ... Kable
Amber Valletta ... Angie
Michael C. Hall ... Ken Castle
Kyra Sedgwick ... Gina Parker Smith
Logan Lerman ... Simon
Alison Lohman ... Trace
Terry Crews ... Hackman
Ramsey Moore Ramsey Moore ... Gorge
Ludacris ... Humanz Brother (as Chris 'Ludacris' Bridges)
Aaron Yoo ... Humanz Dude
Jonathan Chase ... Geek Leader
Dan Callahan ... Backup Geek
Brighid Fleming ... Delia
Johnny Whitworth ... Scotch
Keith Jardine ... Mean Slayer
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Storyline

Ken Castle is extremely rich, popular and powerful since he invented and started exploiting the virtual online parallel reality games, in which people can either pay as user or be paid as 'actor' in a system of mind-control. The ultimate version, Slayers, fields death row convicts as gladiators in a desperate dim bid for survival, which no-one made yet. The champion, John 'Kable' Tillman, was scheduled to die just before he'ld gain release, but he persuades his teenage 'handler' to hand over the reins so he can fully use his talents and experience. Thus Kable escapes to freedom, only to be chased illegally by Castle's men, yet fights back all the way to his HQ and challenges his evil hidden plans. Written by KGF Vissers

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

In the near future, you don't live to play... you'll play to live. See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for frenetic sequences of strong brutal violence throughout, sexual content, nudity and language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

4 September 2009 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Game See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$50,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$9,156,057, 6 September 2009

Gross USA:

$20,534,907

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$40,828,540
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

In an unusual move, the film was actually shot for the 2.40:1 aspect ratio. However, the first edited scenes were done with the unmatted image, but subsequently masked to 2.40:1. The directors preferred the 1.85:1 version, which allowed the audience to see more information and accommodated the handheld camerawork better, and so the aspect ratio was switched. Miraculously, no boom mics needed to be digitally erased from the previously-unused picture information. See more »

Goofs

(at around 1 min) In the scene showing the pyramids in Egypt, the word "Kable" is displayed backwards in Arabic letters. Since Arabic is read from right to left, the way it is shown in the movie, it would be read as "Lebaak". See more »

Quotes

Kable: I need you to get me something.
Trace: What, Tillman?
Kable: Drunk.
See more »

Alternate Versions

German theatrical version was cut by ca. 1 minute to secure a "Not under 18" rating. This was done by distributor Universum before submitting the film to the FSK. The cut version was also released on Blu-ray/DVD. Another DVD version was created for retail chains, this version lacks ca. 11 minutes and is rated "Not under 16". A few weeks after the release of these versions, the uncut version was submitted to the FSK which rated it "Not under 18", too. Since the rating scale for home video is higher than for theatrical releases, the uncut version would have gotten that rating for theatrical release as well, thus it was completely unnecessary to create a cut version in the first place. See more »

Connections

References Crank (2006) See more »

Soundtracks

I've Got You Under My Skin
Written by Cole Porter
Performed by Sammy Davis Jr.
Courtesy of Reprise Records
By Arrangement with Warner Music Group Film & TV Licensing
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

Controlled Iris
31 December 2011 | by tedgSee all my reviews

The story is that insipid kind made fun of even by Robert Rodriguez. The characters are not worthy of the concept. But never mind that.

What interests me in these projects is how the cinematic vocabulary is pushed, and how we adapt our ways of building narrative structure through what we see. Now I readily concede that most elements of this vocabulary are economically driven: the transition frequency is high because it allows the producers to get by with less expensive effects. And these techniques exist because there is a market for thrilling violence rather than introspective nourishment.

But that doesn't take away from the effectiveness of what these guys are doing. These are the 'Crank' guys, where the story was an even more incidental parade of stereotypes. What I perceive here is an editing technique that I did not see in the Transformers movies. In those films — especially the first — small incomprehensible snippets of action were unified by the motion across the snippets. That's why you had a lot of horizontal destructive actions. The editor clearly used reversed right for left frames when it helped with these assemblies.

But here the composition is more noisy in terms of the images. The structures instead are compositions of phrases with rhythmic signature. I presume these rhythmic tropes really do come from the game industry and have evolved over time to fill the gap between the action the player makes and the displayed consequence. So it may not be as intelligent a design as I suppose, merely a splice.

Nonetheless, though it doesn't directly nourish, it does expand and stretch, and that makes it partially worthwhile.

Ted's Evaluation -- 2 of 3: Has some interesting elements.


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