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Dead Man Walking (film)

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Genre  Crime, Drama
Story by  Helen Prejean
Country  United States
7.6/10 IMDb

Director  Tim Robbins
Screenplay  Tim Robbins
Language  English
Dead Man Walking (film) movie poster

Release date  December 29, 1995 (1995-12-29)
Based on  Dead Man Walking  by Sister Helen Prejean C.S.J.
Writer  Helen Prejean (book), Tim Robbins
Awards  Academy Award for Best Actress
Cast  Susan Sarandon (Sister Helen Prejean), Sean Penn (Matthew Poncelet), Robert Prosky (Hilton Barber), Raymond J. Barry (Earl Delacroix), R. Lee Ermey (Clyde Percy), Celia Weston (Mary Beth Percy)
Similar movies  12 Angry Men, A Clockwork Orange, Anatomy of a Murder, American History X, Dances with Wolves, Rashomon

Dead man walking official trailer 2 r lee ermey movie 1995 hd

Dead Man Walking is a 1995 American crime drama film starring Susan Sarandon and Sean Penn, and co-produced and directed by Tim Robbins, who adapted the screenplay from the non-fiction book of the same name. Sister Helen Prejean (Sarandon) establishes a special relationship with Matthew Poncelet (Penn), a prisoner on death row in Louisiana, acting as his spiritual adviser after carrying on correspondence with him.


Dead Man Walking (film) movie scenes

Dead man walking official trailer 1 r lee ermey movie 1995 hd


Dead Man Walking (film) movie scenes

Matthew Poncelet has been in prison for six years, awaiting his execution after being sentenced to death for killing a teenage couple. Poncelet, held in the Louisiana State Penitentiary, committed the crimes with a man named Carl Vitello, who was sentenced to life imprisonment. As the day of his execution comes closer, Poncelet asks Sister Helen, with whom he has corresponded, to help him with a final appeal.

Dead Man Walking (film) movie scenes

She decides to visit him. He is arrogant, sexist, and racist, not even pretending to feel any kind of remorse. He affirms his innocence, insisting Vitello killed the two teenagers. Convincing an experienced attorney to take on Poncelet's case pro bono, Sister Helen tries to have his sentence commuted to life imprisonment. After many visits, she establishes a special relationship with him. At the same time, she gets to know Poncelet’s mother, Lucille, and the families of the two victims. The families do not understand Sister Helen's efforts to help Poncelet, claiming she is "taking his side." Instead they desire "absolute justice"—his life for the lives of their children.

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Sister Helen’s application for a pardon is declined. Poncelet asks Sister Helen to be his spiritual adviser through the day of execution, and she agrees. Sister Helen tells Poncelet that his redemption is possible only if he takes responsibility for what he did. Just before he is taken from his cell, Poncelet admits to Sister Helen that he killed the boy and raped the girl. As he is prepared for execution, he appeals to the boy's father for forgiveness and tells the girl's parents he hopes his death brings them peace. Poncelet is executed by lethal injection and later given a proper burial. The murdered boy's father attends the ceremony still filled with hate, but shortly after begins to pray with Sister Helen, ending the film.


Dead Man Walking (film) TCC Films Dead Man Walking The Catholic Catalogue

  • Susan Sarandon as Sister Helen Prejean
  • Sean Penn as Matthew Poncelet
  • Margo Martindale as Sister Colleen
  • Robert Prosky as Hilton Barber
  • Lois Smith as Augusta Bourg Prejean, Helen's mother
  • Jack Black as Craig Poncelet
  • Celia Weston as Mary Beth Percy
  • Raymond J. Barry as Earl Delacroix
  • R. Lee Ermey as Clyde Percy
  • Michael Cullen as Carl Vitello
  • Scott Wilson as Chaplain Farlely
  • Roberta Maxwell as Lucille Poncelet
  • Peter Sarsgaard as Walter Delacroix
  • Missy Yager as Hope Percy

  • Dead Man Walking (film) Dead Man Walking Bluray

    The film was a family affair for director Tim Robbins. In addition to his longtime companion Susan Sarandon starring, his father Gil Robbins played Bishop Norwich, mother Mary Robbins played an aide to the governor, his sister Adele Robbins played a nurse, and sons Jack and Miles had small roles. His brother, David Robbins, composed the score.

    Critical response

    Dead Man Walking (film) Amazoncom Dead Man Walking Susan Sarandon Sean Penn Robert

    The film was well received by critics. Rotten Tomatoes gives it a 95% positive rating based on reviews from 57 critics. Metacritic gives it a rating of 80/100 based on reviews from 26 critics, indicating "Generally favorable reviews."

    Dead Man Walking (film) Dead Man Walking Film Reviews Films Spirituality Practice

    Hal Hinson of The Washington Post commented: "What this intelligent, balanced, devastating movie puts before us is nothing less than a contest between good and evil." Kenneth Turan of The Los Angeles Times described the acting: "For this kind of straight-ahead movie to work, the acting must be strong without even a breath of theatricality, and in Penn and Sarandon, 'Dead Man Walking' has performers capable of making that happen." Roger Ebert of the Chicago Sun-Times gave the film four stars, his highest rating, and called it "absorbing, surprising, technically superb and worth talking about for a long time afterward."


    Dead Man Walking (film) Dead Man Walking 1995 Visual Parables

    At the 68th Academy Awards, Dead Man Walking was nominated in four different categories: Susan Sarandon won the Academy Award for Best Actress for her role, Sean Penn was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Actor, Tim Robbins was nominated for Best Director and its main track "Dead Man Walkin'" by Bruce Springsteen was nominated for Best Song.

    At the Golden Globes, Sarandon and Penn received nominations for their acting while Robbins received one for best screenplay. At the 46th Berlin International Film Festival, Penn won the Silver Bear for Best Actor.

    The film is recognized by American Film Institute in these lists:

  • 2003: AFI's 100 Years...100 Heroes & Villains:
  • Sister Helen Prejean – Nominated Hero
  • 2004: AFI's 100 Years...100 Songs:
  • "Dead Man Walking'" – Nominated
  • 2006: AFI's 100 Years...100 Cheers – Nominated
  • Box office

    Dead Man Walking debuted on December 29, 1995, in the United States. With a budget of $11 million, the film grossed $39,387,284 domestically and $43,701,011 internationally, for a total of $83,088,295 worldwide.

    Other versions

    In 2002, Tim Robbins, who adapted the book for the film, also wrote a stage version of Dead Man Walking. It has also been adapted as an opera by the same name, premiering in San Francisco.


    Yvonne Koslovsky-Golan, author of The Death Penalty in American Cinema: Criminality and Retribution in Hollywood Film, stated that even though public debate on the death penalty increased for a period after the release of Dead Man Walking, the film did not result in "real political or legal change" but that it did encourage additional academic study on the death penalty.


    Dead Man Walking (film) Wikipedia
    Dead Man Walking (film) IMDbDead Man Walking (film) Rotten TomatoesDead Man Walking (film) Roger EbertDead Man Walking (film) MetacriticDead Man Walking (film)