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Civic Duty (2006)

Peter Krause  |  R |  DVD
3.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (19 customer reviews)

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Product Details

  • Actors: Peter Krause
  • Format: Multiple Formats, AC-3, Color, Dolby, Widescreen, NTSC
  • Language: English (Dolby Surround), French (Dolby Surround), Spanish (DTS 5.1)
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.78:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: R (Restricted)
  • Studio: 20th Century Fox
  • DVD Release Date: October 2, 2007
  • Run Time: 98 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (19 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B000TJBN6M
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #373,620 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Civic Duty" on IMDb

Special Features


Editorial Reviews

Angry and depressed over losing his job, accountant Terry Allen (Peter Krause) begins to suspect his new, Middle Eastern neighbor is at the center of a terrorist conspiracy. Terry becomes obsessed about revealing the man's true identity and finally takes matters into his own hands ⦠with shocking results.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
9 of 11 people found the following review helpful
I was always surprised in the wake of 9/11 that we never heard of an instance where an Arab looking passenger got up to use the lavatory on an airplane and was attacked by the other passengers. With tensions and suspicion both running high I thought such incidents were inevitable, but if they happened I never heard about them. There was the incident where six Muslim clerics where pulled off of an airplane in Minneapolis because the pilot received a note from a passenger pointing out there were "Arabic men" on the plane, but that has been the exception rather than the rule (the airport in Minneapolis is apparently just a place where strange things happen if you pray in Arabic or go around tapping your foot too often in a restroom).

"Civic Duty" is a 2006 film that deals with the sort of paranoid over-reaction to the terrorist attack that I had suspected might become commonplace. Terry Allen (Peter Krause) has just lost his job as an accountant and without work to keep his mind occupied he becomes obsessed with coverage of the War on Terror on cable television. Especially since a "Middle Eastern" looking young man (Khaled Abol Naga) has moved into an apartment that Terry can see from his window. We already know that Terry is predisposed to see the worst in people after he cruelly points out to a smiling bank teller the idiotic redundancy of the term "ATM Machine." Like those strange little beings on those annoying television commercials, Terry stars off sour and then tries to be sweet. It is just that we never really buy it, any more than we can really believe that there is a terrorist in that other apartment. The more desperate Terry is to believe it, the more we resist the idea. But is the film just toying with us?
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8 of 10 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Better Than Anticipated January 10, 2008
Pros: Great acting throughout; Peter Krause is incredible. All extras fill their respective roles convincingly, as well. Directer put great emphasis on the details, which, in this movie, is important. Story/Plot is simple due to its symbolic nature, making it easy to follow. Awesome camera work lends to the unsettling nature of the film. Great cultural/stereotype contrasts, though sometimes over the top.

Cons: Message is too heavy-handed, taking away some realism. Film tends to be dramatically claustrophobic. It does not matter if it was intended, it still needed air.

Where They Went Wrong: There is an anti-American diatribe against American Foreign Policy to rebut the cruel treatment of women in certain Middle-Eastern countries. This did nothing to lend to the films credibility and came off as ridiculous, unfair, and one sided. Conflicts (wars) are completely different than inhumane domestic policy. Even if those conflicts are wrong. The whole screed was a misnomer.

Where They Went Right: The symbolism of Krause's angry disposition serving as Americas general hostility, fed by media hype and propaganda. This predisposition made the whole chaotic scenario almost believable.

This film was enjoyable, just wish it would have been more well-rounded.

Also, we could've used this film circa 2004...whatever.

Rent It.
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11 of 15 people found the following review helpful
When I was reading the back of this DVD I was thinking to myself, well it could be a good movie, but from the very moment it got started it grab me, and was captivating until the very dramatic end.

Terry is a good looking middle class accountant, who is age wise either in his late 20s or early 30s. His life clearly takes a turn for the worse, when he is suddenly and unexpectedly laid off. Now, the problems with his wife begin: there's the impending question of how to pay their mortage on their new home, and most of all how soon Terry will get another job, to make ends meet. But all these problem pale in comparison to Terry's newest obsession with his Middle Eastern looking neighbor. To Terry he is behaving increasingly suspicious and fits neatly into the profile of an islamic extremist and terrorist.

This new obsession which he discovered soon starts to drive a big wedge between him and his wife. She simply dosen't at all approve of Terry's suspicions. Needless to say, that things get more drastic and out of control from now on. Terry, after some time calls on the FBI, hoping literally that they will kick down the door of the new Arab neighbor and simply arrest him, since he saw a type of chemical laboratory in his apartment. The FBI Agent, an elder experience professional, soon tells Terry in no uncertain terms to back off, since this is a free nation, where everyone has certain constitutional rights, and these are always to be respected, hence, kicking down someones door, because of a mere suspicion or notion, is simply out of the question. Moreover, Terry is warned not ever again to go into this apartment, (he did so after he knocked and found the door to be open), or else the FBI will start investigating him and making his life miserable.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Small play on a big subject April 1, 2011
The big subject is terrorism. The movie could be a good play because there are only four characters and three settings. The characters are a recently laid-off accountant with a poor work history, his babe-a-licious hollywood wife, a middle-eastern chemistry student, and an FBI agent. The settings are the accountant's apartment, his car, and the Arab student's apartment. The laid-off accountant spends all day watching terrorism stories on cable news. Eventually he begins to suspect his Arab neighbor of being a terrorist. His wife thinks he is crazy and leaves him. The FBI agent tells him the Arab student passes a background check and is not under investigation. The accountant takes matters into his own hands as he feel is his "Civic Duty." It would be a spoiler to say what he does or whether he was right in doing it. Given the small budget of the film, I would say it was simple and well done. If it had bigger budget, much more elaborate things could have done to make it a more complex and compelling story. As it is, I would say it worth renting or waiting for it to come on television, or maybe see it as a play with live actors.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Published 13 days ago by Jolene
1.0 out of 5 stars Right Wing Propaganda
This film is the post 9/11 version of the Nazi propaganda film, "Triumph of the Will."


"Civic Duty" is nothing more than a paranoid Tea... Read more
Published 12 months ago by OldBrit
3.0 out of 5 stars Somebody's Watching You: "Rear Window" For The Post-9/11 Set
Spare and intriguing, "Civic Duty" plays out like an updated "Rear Window" infused liberally with post 9/11 paranoia. Read more
Published on October 15, 2012 by K. Harris
3.0 out of 5 stars Somebody's Watching You--"Rear Window" For The Post-9/11 Set
Spare and intriguing, "Civic Duty" plays out like an updated "Rear Window" infused liberally with post 9/11 paranoia. Read more
Published on October 4, 2010 by K. Harris
2.0 out of 5 stars Intriguing premise that loses its way

"Civic Duty" is like "Rear Window" for the post-9/11 age. Terry Allen is a recently laid-off accountant who, thanks in large part to the influence of an... Read more
Published on July 15, 2008 by Roland E. Zwick
4.0 out of 5 stars Better than you think....
Peter Krause and Richard Schiff carry on their backs what would otherwise would probably be a hilarliously bad B-movie. Read more
Published on May 11, 2008 by James Burns
4.0 out of 5 stars The perils of too much time at home
After three separate copies of CIVIC DUTY received from a well known Web-based DVD rental service, each of which skipped or stopped playing altogether, I finally purchased (at a... Read more
Published on March 3, 2008 by Joseph Haschka
3.0 out of 5 stars Does'nt Try Hard Enough
I had high hopes for this movie based on the feedback , the trailer and the cover - but it would like to be a "Disturbia" or "Rear Window" but it fails to connect . Read more
Published on January 26, 2008 by M. B. Richardson
2.0 out of 5 stars Hallucination
"Civic Duty" was presented at the Tribeca Film Festival. Director Jeff Renfroe had previously directed a feature titled "One Point 0. Read more
Published on January 16, 2008 by Lee Armstrong
1.0 out of 5 stars Dumbest Movie Ever
The makers of this film mocked the real terrorist threat by using a character who is insane and abusive to stalk an Arab neighbor. Read more
Published on December 20, 2007 by Meredith Scarlett
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