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755 Ratings

The Manchurian Candidate

Directed by Jonathan Demme
United States, 2004
Drama, Thriller


In the midst of the Gulf War, soldiers are kidnapped and brainwashed for sinister purposes.

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The Manchurian Candidate Directed by Jonathan Demme

Awards & Festivals

BAFTA Awards

2005 | Nominee: Best Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role

Golden Globes (USA)

2005 | Nominee: Best Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role in a Motion Picture

Jonathan Demme’s remake of The Manchurian Candidate, which I rewatched recently, is a mixed bag, but every shot of Denzel Washington in that movie is a little work of art. Of course, he’s one of the most photogenic leading men Hollywood has ever had; few of us will ever look as good from our best angle as Washington does from his worst. But I’d wager that, with the exception of Tony Scott, no director got the camera to love Washington’s face quite like Demme.
July 28, 2017
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There was no reason to think that it was anything but a terrible idea to remake “The Manchurian Candidate” until Demme did it in 2004. The movie drew clever connections between the paranoia and political divisions of the early Cold War era and the years following the Gulf War and capturing the bleak, at times prankish sense of humor in John Frankenheimer’s original. And it displayed the deep empathy that has always been Demme’s trademark.
April 26, 2017
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Everything about Demme’s film is perfectly decent. So instead of Frank Sinatra’s moving, anguished performance, we get Denzel Washington’s perfectly decent one. Instead of Frankenheimer’s taut, surrealism-inflected visuals, we get Demme’s perfectly decent filmmaking.
December 16, 2016
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