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A Shock to the System

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Director  Jan Egleson
Music director  Gary Chang
6.7/10 IMDb

Genre  Comedy, Crime, Thriller
Screenplay  Andrew Klavan
Language  English
A Shock to the System movie poster
Release date  March 23, 1990 (1990-03-23)
Writer  Simon Brett (novel), Andrew Klavan (screenplay)
Cast  Michael Caine (Graham Marshall), Elizabeth McGovern (Stella Anderson), Swoosie Kurtz (Leslie Marshall), Peter Riegert (Robert Benham), Will Patton (Lt. Laker), Jenny Wright (Melanie O'Conner)
Similar movies  Michael Caine appears in A Shock to the System and Deadfall

A shock to the system trailer

When experienced advertising executive Graham Marshall (Michael Caine) loses out on a promotion to a younger man, the situation inadvertently leads him to cause a subway accident in which a homeless man is killed. Discovering that there are no consequences to this incident, Marshall begins plotting revenge on anyone who has wronged him, and even his longtime wife, Leslie (Swoosie Kurtz), isnt safe. How far will Marshall travel down this path of vengeance?


A Shock to the System movie scenes

A Shock to the System (1990) is a U.S. dark comedy crime thriller film directed by Jan Egleson, starring Michael Caine, Swoosie Kurtz, Elizabeth McGovern, and Peter Riegert. It is based on the 1984 novel A Shock to the System by British author Simon Brett.

A Shock to the System movie scenes

Madison Avenue executive Graham Marshall has paid his dues. A talented and devoted worker, he has suffered through mounting bills and a nagging wife with one thing to look forward to: a well-deserved promotion. But when the promotion is given to a loud-mouthed yuppie associate, Graham unleashes his rage on an overly aggressive panhandler, who he accidently kills by pushing him into the path of an oncoming subway train. He re-thinks his problems with an entirely new solution. First, he arranges an "accident" for his annoying wife. Then he creates another "mishap" for his boss. It seems like the world is once more Graham's oyster…but a missing cigarette lighter and a prying police detective may change all that.

Plot summary

A Shock to the System movie scenes

A family man named Graham Marshall, a long-time executive in a large advertising company, is unexpectedly passed over for promotion. Marshall himself can live with it, but his nagging wife Leslie is devastated and continually reproaches her husband for his apparent lack of ambition and willpower.

A shock to the system 1990 trailer

An unfortunate accident occurs in the subway, caused by Marshall, in which a panhandler is killed. It goes unnoticed, which gives him a whole new set of ideas as far as his future life is concerned.

A Shock to the System movie scenes A Shock To The System 1990 Movie

Deciding to take revenge on all the people who have caused him problems in his life, Marshall starts meticulously planning their violent deaths. This includes his wife, whom he eventually electrocutes, and his young rival at the office, Bob Benham.

A Shock to the System movie scenes A Shock to the System Michael Caine is one of the most watchable actors around which is critical to the success of this movie The director needs someone

Marshall becomes much better acquainted with an office colleague, Stella Anderson. And when none of the murders is linked to him, Graham feels vindicated in his belief that killing off everyone who has harmed him is the right thing to do. He soon passes the point of no return.

Similar Movies

Michael Caine appears in A Shock to the System and Deadfall. Peter Riegert appears in A Shock to the System and Coldblooded. Blue Steel (1989). Michael Caine appears in A Shock to the System and Dressed to Kill. Michael Caine appears in A Shock to the System and Gambit.


  • Michael Caine as Graham Marshall
  • Elizabeth McGovern as Stella Anderson
  • Peter Riegert as Bob Benham
  • Swoosie Kurtz as Leslie Marshall
  • Will Patton as Lt. Laker
  • John McMartin as George Brewster
  • Jenny Wright as Melanie OConner
  • Philip Moon as Henry Park
  • Barbara Baxley as Lillian
  • Haviland Morris as Tara Liston
  • References

    A Shock to the System Wikipedia
    A Shock to the System IMDbA Shock to the System Roger EbertA Shock to the System Rotten TomatoesA Shock to the System

    Similar Topics
    Andrew Klavan
    Elizabeth McGovern
    Jenny Wright