12 Monkeys

Universal / Atlas Entertainment / Classico Released 1996



User Score: 47

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Movie Summary

Terry Gilliam

Based on an experimental 1962 French film, La Jetée, 12 Monkeys takes place in a post-apocalyptic future world devastated by a mysterious virus. James Cole, a convict in the year 2035, makes a deal: if he travels back in time to stop the virus before its release, he will get parole. His first trip goes wrong; he is sent back to 1990, several years too early, and his warnings about the virus land him in a mental institution thanks to Dr. Kathryn Railly. There, he meets inmate Jeffrey Goines, the son of a famous scientist who happens to work with viruses. After an intervention by scientists in his own time, Cole finds himself in the year of the outbreak, 1996. Cole kidnaps Railly and sets out to find Goines, who is the leader of a mysterious group called the Army of Twelve Monkeys. However, when Goines tells Cole that the virus was Cole's idea all along, the mission -- and Cole's grip on reality -- begins to unravel.



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Metacritic Score

  • 90

    The New York Times Elvis Mitchell

    Fierce and disturbing, with a plot that skillfully resists following any familiar course. The film's hero fears that he's half-crazy, and for two hours Mr. Gilliam artfully keeps h...

  • 75

    Chicago Sun-Times Roger Ebert

    Any laughs that it inspires will be very hollow. It's more of a celebration of madness and doom, with a hero who tries to prevail against the chaos of his condition, and is inadequ...

  • 40

    Variety Emanuel Levy

    Gilliam's work is long on sensibility, short on sense.


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    Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


    • TRIVIA (0)

    • QUOTES (0)

    • NOTES (5)

      • Production budget - $30,000,000
        Domestic gross - $57,141,459 (31st)
        Worldwide gross - $168,839,459 (19th)

        Domestic adjusted for 2013 - $105,491,924
        Worldwide adjusted for 2013 - $311,703,617

      • Academy Awards Nominations:
        1. Supporting Actor - Brad Pitt (won by Kevin Spacey for The Unusual Suspects)
        2. Costume Design

        ASCAP Awards Wins:
        1. Top Box Office Film

        Saturn Awards Wins:
        1. Best Supporting Actor - Brad Pitt
        2. Best Science Fiction Film
        3. Best Costumes

        Saturn Award Nominations:
        1. Best Actor - Bruce Willis (won by George Clooney for From Dusk Til Dawn)
        2. Best Actress - Madeleine Stowe (won by Angela Bassett for Strange Days)
        3. Best Director - Terry Gilliam (won by Kathryn Bigelow for Strange Days)
        4. Best Writing

        Golden Globe Wins:
        1. Supporting Actor - Brad Pitt

      • Filming locations:
        Baltimore-Washington International Airport, Maryland
        Camden, New Jersey
        City Hall, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
        Delaware Generating Station, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
        Eastern State Penitentiary, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
        Garrett-Jacobs Mansion, Baltimore, Maryland
        Girard College, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
        Memorial Hall, Fairmount Park, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
        Met Theatre, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
        Montréal, Québec, Canada
        Mount Vernon, Baltimore, Maryland
        Philadelphia Convention Center, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
        Philadelphia Zoo, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
        Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
        Renfrew Center, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
        Richmond Generating Station, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
        Ridgeway Library, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
        Senator Theatre, Baltimore, Maryland
        Upperco, Maryland
        Wanamaker's Department Store, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
        Westport Power Plant, Baltimore, Maryland

      • Taglines:
        1. They're Coming.
        2. The future is history.

      • Music:
        Piano Concerto No. 21 In C Major, K.467
        Written by: Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
        What a Wonderful World
        Written by Bob Thiele, George David Weiss
        Performed by Louis Armstrong
        Blueberry Hill
        Music by Vincent Rose
        Lyrics by Al Lewis, Larry Stock
        Performed by Fats Domino
        Sleep Walk
        Written by Johnny Farina, Ann Farina, Santo Farina
        Performed by B.J. Cole
        Vertigo Theme
        Written by Bernard Herrmann
        from "Suite Punta Del Este"
        Written by Astor Piazzolla
        Written by Milton Grant, Link Wray
        Performed by Link Wray & The Wraymen
        The Earth Died Screaming
        Written and Performed by Tom Waits
        Woody Woodpecker Music
        Written by Walter Greene
        Written by Bob Spickard, Brian Carman
        Performed by The Chantays
        Silent Night, Holy Night
        Music by Franz Gruber
        Lyrics by Joseph Mohr

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    More Info About This Movie


    Psychological, End of The World Movies