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A Few Good Men

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Movie Info & Cast

Synopsis

In this military courtroom drama based on the play by Aaron Sorkin, Navy lawyer Lt. Daniel Kaffee (Tom Cruise) is assigned to defend two Marines, Pfc. Louden Downey (James Marshall) and Lance Cpl. Harold Dawson (Wolfgang Bodison), who are accused of the murder of fellow leatherneck Pfc. William Santiago (Michael de Lorenzo) at the U.S. Navy base at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. Kaffee generally plea bargains for his clients rather than bring them to trial, which is probably why he was assigned this potentially embarassing case, but when Lt. Commander JoAnne Galloway (Demi Moore) is assigned to assist Kaffee, she is convinced that there's more to the matter than they've been led to believe and convinces her colleague that the case should go to court. Under questioning, Downey and Dawson reveal that Santiago died in the midst of a hazing ritual known as Code Red after he threatened to inform higher authorities that Dawson opened fire on a Cuban watchtower. They also state that the Code Red was performed under the orders of Lt. Jonathan Kendrick (Kiefer Sutherland). Kendrick's superior, tough-as-nails Col. Nathan Jessup (Jack Nicholson), denies any knowledge of the order to torture Santiago, but when Lt. Col. Matthew Markinson (J.T. Walsh) confides to Kaffee that Jessup demanded the Code Red for violating his order of silence, Kaffee and Galloway have to find a way to prove this in court. A Few Good Men also features Kevin Bacon as prosecuting attorney Capt. Jack Ross and Kevin Pollak as Kaffee and Galloway's research assistant, Lt. Sam Weinberg.~ Mark Deming, All Movie Guide

Cast

  • Tom Cruise
  • Jack Nicholson
  • Demi Moore
  • Kevin Bacon
  • Kiefer Sutherland
  • Kevin Pollak
  • James Marshall
  • J.T. Walsh
  • Christopher Guest
  • J.A. Preston

Did You Know?

Trivia

  • The original play, "A Few Good Men" by Aaron Sorkin, opened at the Music Box Theater on November 15, 1989, and ran for 497 performances.
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Goofs

  • Col. Jessep's tie after trying to attack Danny and fixing his uniform. (See also Mars Attacks! (1996).)
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Quotes

    • [to the court after asking what Jessup packed for a one day trip to Washington D,C]
    • Kaffee: Is the colonel's underwear a matter of national security?
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Metacritic

75

Works because it's able to draw so many side issues into its central conflict, spreading its concerns culture-wide. [11 Dec 1992]

Metacritic review by Dave Kehr
Dave Kehr
Chicago Tribune
75

Pace and performances dominate, with popped salutes going to Keifer Sutherland, Kevin Pollack, Kevin Bacon and especially Nicholson's smiling barracuda. [11 Dec 1992]

Metacritic review by Mike Clark
Mike Clark
USA Today
63

The film doesn't make us work, doesn't allow us to figure out things for ourselves, is afraid we'll miss things if they're not spelled out.

Metacritic review by Roger Ebert
Roger Ebert
Chicago Sun-Times