7.6/10
95,718
423 user 141 critic

The Life of David Gale (2003)

A man against capital punishment is accused of murdering a fellow activist and is sent to death row.

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3,285 ( 430)

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3 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Barbara Kreuster
Constance Jones ...
Reporter A.J. Roberts
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Lee Ritchey ...
Joe Mullarkey
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Motel Waitress
Cindy Waite ...
Margie
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Duke Grover
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Jesse De Luna ...
Supervising Guard
Vernon Grote ...
Door Guard
...
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Storyline

When anti-death-penalty activist David Gale is convicted and condemned to death for the murder of a colleague, reporter Bitsey Bloom sets out to learn the story behind Gale's crime. What she finds challenges her belief in Gale's guilt and, finally, in the justice system. Written by Jim Beaver <jumblejim@prodigy.net>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

The crime is clear. The truth is not.

Genres:

Crime | Drama | Thriller

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for violent images, nudity, language and sexuality | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Official Sites:

Country:

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Language:

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Release Date:

21 February 2003 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Das Leben des David Gale  »

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Box Office

Budget:

$50,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$7,117,225, 23 February 2003, Wide Release

Gross USA:

$19,593,740, 30 March 2003

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$16,971,092, 6 November 2003
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

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Color:

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Roger Ebert gave zero stars for this movie in his review, writing it: "Spacey and Parker are honorable men. Why did they go to Texas and make this silly movie? The last shot made me want to throw something at the screen--maybe Spacey and Parker." See more »

Goofs

Near the end of the film, when the protesters are outside David Gale's execution, there is a clear shot of a large banner hung across a barricade which reads "Mark 6:10 Murder does not stop Murder." Mark 6:10 actually reads "And He said to them, Wherever you enter a house, stay there until you leave town." (NASB), so the bible quote actually has nothing to do with murder at all. See more »

Quotes

Constance Harraway: [giving an anti-death penalty speech] When you kill someone, you rob their family - not just of a loved one, but of their humanity. You harden their hearts with hate, you take away their capacity for civilized dispassion, you condemn them to bloodlust. It's a cruel and horrible thing, but indulging that hate will *never* help. The damage is done, and once we've had our pound of flesh, we're still hungry. We leave the death house muttering that lethal injection was just too good for them. In the ...
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Connections

References The Eiger Sanction (1975) See more »

Soundtracks

Tiemblo
(A.T. Molina Remix) (1999)
Written by Elvis Crespo
Performed by Elvis Crespo
Courtesy of Sony Discos, Inc.
Under License from Sony Discos, Inc.
By Arrangement with Sony Music Licensing
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
Very Underrated
26 September 2007 | by See all my reviews

Directed by the legendary Sir Alan Parker, this is the story of David Gale, a University of Texas professor of philosophy against capital punishment who is accused of murdering a fellow activist and is sent to death row.

Kevin Spacey and Laura Linney deliver great performances in the flashbacks. This movie is by far one of Spacey's strongest performances, he is always very subtle and insightful portraying David Gale. Laura Linney really makes a name for herself in this motion picture, she's as consistently complex and likable here as she is in "Primal Fear" and "You Can Count on Me". Kate Winslet, however, has problems in carefully crafting her character. She's called upon to cry about four or five times in this film and each time she does so, the action unfortunately rings more and more false. Other than that, she is average. Meanwhile, Gabriel Mann, Leon Rippy and Matt Craven also provide colorful backdrops to the story at hand with their credible supporting characters.

"The Life of David Gale" is a film that had a great opportunity to create controversy about the death penalty. Unfortunately, it is excessively underrated by critics, despite being nominated for the Human Rights Award from the Political Film Society and being present at the prestigious Berlin International Film Festival.

Sad and stunning. 8/10


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