The Usual Suspects (1995)

R | 106 mins | Drama | 1995

THIS TITLE IS OUTSIDE THE AFI CATALOG OF FEATURE FILMS (1893-1993)
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Director:

Bryan Singer

Cinematographer:

Newton Thomas Sigel

Editor:

John Ottman

Production Designer:

Howard Cummings

Production Company:

Blue Parrot
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HISTORY

The Usual Suspects was ranked 10th on AFI's 2008 10 Top 10 list of the ten greatest American film mysteries of all ...

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The Usual Suspects was ranked 10th on AFI's 2008 10 Top 10 list of the ten greatest American film mysteries of all time.

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HISTORY CREDITS
CREDIT TYPE
CREDIT
SOURCE CITATIONS
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
Los Angeles Times
16 Aug 1995
p. 1.
New York Times
16 Aug 1995
p. 15.
Variety
30 Jan 1995
p. 46.
CAST
PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
PRODUCTION COMPANY
DISTRIBUTION COMPANY
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
DIRECTOR
PRODUCERS
PHOTOGRAPHY
Dir of photog
ART DIRECTOR
Prod des
FILM EDITOR
Film ed
MUSIC
DETAILS
Release Date:
1995
Premiere Information:
Los Angeles opening: 16 Aug 1995; New York opening: week of 16 Aug 1995
Physical Properties:
Sound
Color
Duration(in mins):
106
MPAA Rating:
R
Countries:
Germany, United States
Language:
English
Passed by NBR:
No
SYNOPSIS

On a ship docked in Southern California, two men survive a heist gone awry: Hungarian gangster Arkosh Kovash, and a criminal with cerebral palsy who goes by the name “Verbal” Kint. As the ship goes up in flames, Kovash is rushed to the hospital to be treated for burns, while Verbal is taken into police custody. He confesses to interrogators that six weeks earlier, in a line-up at a New York City jail, he met four other criminals: Keaton, McManus, Fenster, and Hockney. With the help of Keaton’s lawyer girl friend, the five men—all of whom were innocent of the crime in question—were released. However, they banded together to get revenge on the New York Police Department (NYPD) by holding up a jewel smuggler in cahoots with corrupt policemen. The fivesome stole a collection of emeralds worth millions of dollars. In doing so, they exposed over fifty cops who stood to profit from the smuggled jewels. Verbal explains that he and the others brought the stolen emeralds to California to sell them on the black market. Redfoot, the man who bought them, offered more work to the group, and they agreed. However, the subsequent robbery went poorly. Afterward, they discovered that a lawyer named Kobayashi had masterminded it. Upon meeting him, they learned that Kobayashi was behind the police line-up which had brought them together in the first place. Kobayashi explained that he was acting on behalf of Keyser Soze, a Turkish mob boss seeking to avenge Keaton, McManus, Fenster, Hockney, and Verbal, all of whom had unwittingly crossed him at different times. Kobayashi delivered Keyser Soze’s new orders: the men were to rob a ship run by ...

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On a ship docked in Southern California, two men survive a heist gone awry: Hungarian gangster Arkosh Kovash, and a criminal with cerebral palsy who goes by the name “Verbal” Kint. As the ship goes up in flames, Kovash is rushed to the hospital to be treated for burns, while Verbal is taken into police custody. He confesses to interrogators that six weeks earlier, in a line-up at a New York City jail, he met four other criminals: Keaton, McManus, Fenster, and Hockney. With the help of Keaton’s lawyer girl friend, the five men—all of whom were innocent of the crime in question—were released. However, they banded together to get revenge on the New York Police Department (NYPD) by holding up a jewel smuggler in cahoots with corrupt policemen. The fivesome stole a collection of emeralds worth millions of dollars. In doing so, they exposed over fifty cops who stood to profit from the smuggled jewels. Verbal explains that he and the others brought the stolen emeralds to California to sell them on the black market. Redfoot, the man who bought them, offered more work to the group, and they agreed. However, the subsequent robbery went poorly. Afterward, they discovered that a lawyer named Kobayashi had masterminded it. Upon meeting him, they learned that Kobayashi was behind the police line-up which had brought them together in the first place. Kobayashi explained that he was acting on behalf of Keyser Soze, a Turkish mob boss seeking to avenge Keaton, McManus, Fenster, Hockney, and Verbal, all of whom had unwittingly crossed him at different times. Kobayashi delivered Keyser Soze’s new orders: the men were to rob a ship run by Argentinian drug smugglers, and destroy the cocaine onboard, worth $91 million. In exchange, they would settle their scores with Soze. Verbal gives an anecdote to illustrate Soze’s brutality, then tells the rest of the story: Fenster was killed for trying to flee before the raid, and the others were scared into submission by Kobayashi, who threatened to hurt their families and loved ones if they didn’t go through with it; once on board the ship, they killed a number of Argentinian and Hungarian mobsters, only to find there was no cocaine; Hockney, McManus and Keaton were killed by an unidentified shooter; and the same man set the ship on fire while Verbal hid on the dock. During Verbal’s interrogation, Arkosh Kovash, the other survivor, has been giving testimony from his hospital bed, in which he claims to have seen Keyser Soze. With the help of a Hungarian translator, he describes Soze to a sketch artist. Meanwhile, Detective Kujan, who has been speaking with Verbal, forms the opinion that Keaton was actually Soze, based on his link to one of the smugglers aboard the ship. Verbal confirms this suspicion, claiming that Keaton masterminded everything. However, he is unwilling to testify in court. Just as Verbal is let out on bail, Kujan realizes he was making up names and facts based on bits of information plucked from a bulletin board inside the room, and the bottom of Kujan’s coffee mug, which reads “Kobayashi.” Kujan rushes after Verbal, who is no longer walking with a limp as he heads down the street, indicating he does not actually have cerebral palsy. Meanwhile, a police sketch is delivered to the station, showing Kovash’s description of Keyser Soze, which is the exact likeness of Verbal. On the street, Verbal barely eludes Kujan as he steals into a car driven by the man he referred to in his testimony as Kobayashi.

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GENRE
Genre:
Sub-genre:
Suspense


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Offscreen Credit
Name Occurs Before Title
AFI Life Achievement Award
The American Film Institute is grateful to Sir Paul Getty KBE and the Sir Paul Getty KBE Estate for their dedication to the art of the moving image and their support for the AFI Catalog of Feature Films and without whose support AFI would not have been able to achieve this historical landmark in this epic scholarly endeavor.