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The Spanish Prisoner (1997)

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An employee of a corporation with a lucrative secret process is tempted to betray it. But there's more to it than that.

Director:

David Mamet

Writer:

David Mamet
3 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Campbell Scott ... Joe Ross
Ricky Jay ... George Lang
Rebecca Pidgeon ... Susan Ricci
Richard L. Friedman Richard L. Friedman ... Businessman
Ben Gazzara ... Klein
Jerry Graff Jerry Graff ... Businessman
G. Roy Levin G. Roy Levin ... Businessman
Hilary Hinckle Hilary Hinckle ... Resort Concierge
David Pittu ... Resort Manager
Steve Martin ... Jimmy Dell
Christopher Kaldor Christopher Kaldor ... Dell's Bodyguard
Felicity Huffman ... McCune
Gary McDonald Gary McDonald ... Ticket Agent
Mike Robinson Mike Robinson ... Security Person (as Michael Robinson)
Olivia Tecosky Olivia Tecosky ... Flight Attendant
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Storyline

Joe Ross is a rising star. He's designed a process that will make his company millions. He wants a bonus for this work, but fears his boss will stiff him. He meets a wealthy stranger, Jimmy Dell, and they strike up an off-kilter friendship. When the boss seems to set Ross up to get nothing, he seeks Dell's help. Then he learns Dell is not what he seems, so he contacts an FBI agent through his tightly-wound assistant, Susan Ricci. The FBI asks him to help entrap Dell. He accepts, a sting is arranged, but suddenly it's he who's been conned out of the process and framed for murder. Bewildered and desperate, he enlists Susan's aid to prove his innocence. Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Can you really trust anyone? See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG for thematic elements including tension, some violent images and brief language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

15 May 1998 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

La prisonnière espagnole See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$10,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$124,011, 5 April 1998, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$10,200,000
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby SR

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The red and white Cadillac convertible that appears in the car dealer's showroom is the same car that is stolen from an underground garage elevator by the con men in David Mamet's House of Games (1987). See more »

Goofs

When Joe Ross makes his way through the carousel, a movie light can be seen in the background with a crew member and cases also visible for a few moments to the right of the light. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Airport Security: What is the purpose of your trip, please?
Joe Ross: Business.
Airport Security: Thank you and welcome to St. Estéphe.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Game k n b?: Episode dated 5 October 2006 (2006) See more »

Soundtracks

I Wonder Who's Kissing Her Now
Written by Frank R. Adams (as Frank Adams), William M. Hough (as Will Hough),
Joseph E. Howard (as Joseph Howard) and Harold Orlob
Arranged by Play-Rite Music Rolls, Inc.
Played at the carousel
See more »

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User Reviews

Clever "who can you trust" whodunnit, with Steve Martin in a serious role.
9 August 2001 | by TxMikeSee all my reviews

Steve Martin in a serious role in a Mamet film is reason enough to see "The Spanish Prisoner", which I believe gets its name from a type of sucker scam of the same name. And that's what this film is about. A young professional invents "the process" which is very valuable to his company but he is worried he will not get compensated well enough. This seed of doubt, which others around him recognize, sets into motion a whole series of secrets and deceptions. The dialog is snappy as in all Mamet writing, and you either really like the style a lot, or you don't. I really like it. The various twists get a bit hard to follow, and it is the kind of movie you have to see at least twice for full benefit. It is not a great film, but a worthy one.

Beside Steve martin in his serious role, which he pulls off very well, the film also has Ben Gazzara and Mamet's wife, Rebecca Pidgeon who is very good in one of the key roles in this film.


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