The Usual Suspects Poster
The Usual Suspects
Theatrical Poster

Release Date: August 16, 1995 (USA)

Director: Bryan Singer

MPAA Rating: R

Genre: Crime Thriller

Running Time: 105 minutes

Box Office: $23,341,568 Domestic Gross

Plot Summary:

A massive explosion rips through a ship in a San Pedro, CA, harbor, leaving 27 men dead, and 91 million dollars' worth of cocaine, believed to be on board, mysteriously missing. The only survivors are a severely burned and very scared Hungarian terrorist, and "Verbal" Kint (Kevin Spacey), a crippled con-man.

Near the end of the film, Kint, says, "The greatest trick the Devil ever pulled was convincing the world he didn't exist." This may be the key line in this story; the farther along the movie goes, the more one realizes that not everything is quite what it seems, and what began as a conventional whodunit turns into something quite different.

Police detective Dave Kujan (Chazz Palminteri) brings in the main suspect, Verbal Kint, for questioning. Kint's nickname stems from his inability to keep his mouth shut, and he recounts the events that led to the disaster in great detail. Events which revolve around a heist orchestrated by Keiser Soze, a criminal mastermind whose violent reputation is so infamous that he's said to have responded to a threat to murder his family by killing them himself, just to prove that he feared no one.


"I was attracted to The Usual Suspects because of its director [Bryan Singer], its writer [Christopher Mcquarrie], and because so many things that that movie said to me were beneath the surface. It's a great thriller or mystery, but on another level it's a film about the fact that, if you only look at a person through one lens, or only believe what you're told, you can often miss the truth that is staring you in the face." -- Kevin Spacey, Interview Magazine, February 1997.


Main Cast
Kevin Spacey - Roger "Verbal" Kint
Pete Postlethwaite - Kobayashi
Chazz Palminteri - Dave Kujan
Gabriel Byrne - Dean Keaton
Stephen Baldwin - Spencer McManus
Benicio Del Toro - Fred Fenster
Dan Hedaya - Jeff Rabin
Kevin Pollak - Todd Hockney
Giancarlo Esposito - Jack Baer, FBI
Suzy Amis - Edie Finneran
Major Awards Won
Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences - 1996
Award: Oscar
Category Winner
Best Original Screenplay Christopher McQuarrie
Best Supporting Actor Kevin Spacey
   
British Academy Awards, BAFTA 1996
Category Winner
Best Editing John Ottman
Best Original Screenplay Christopher McQuarrie
   
Chicago Film Critics Association Awards 1996
Category Winner
Best Screenplay Christopher McQuarrie
Best Supporting Actor Kevin Spacey
   
Independent Spirit Awards 1996
Category Winner
Best Screenplay Christopher McQuarrie
Best Supporting Actor Benicio Del Toro
   
National Board of Review Awards - 1995
Category Winner
Best Ensemble Acting  
Best Supporting Actor Kevin Spacey
   
New York Film Critics Circle Awards - 1995
Category Winner
Best Supporting Actor Kevin Spacey
   
QuoteThe greatest trick the Devil ever pulled was convincing the world he doesn't exist.Quote -- Verbal Kint