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  • Disturbing Behavior
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Disturbing Behavior

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Product Details

  • Actors: James Marsden, Katie Holmes, Nick Stahl, Tobias Mehler, Steve Railsback
  • Directors: David Nutter
  • Writers: Scott Rosenberg
  • Producers: Armyan Bernstein, Brent O'Connor, C.O. Erickson, Elisabeth Seldes, Jonathan Shestack
  • Format: Anamorphic, Closed-captioned, Color, Dolby, Full Screen, Widescreen, NTSC
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 5.1), French (Dolby Digital 2.0 Surround)
  • Subtitles: English, French
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: R (Restricted)
  • Studio: MGM (Video & DVD)
  • DVD Release Date: January 5, 1999
  • Run Time: 84 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (162 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: 0792840127
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #30,202 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Disturbing Behavior" on IMDb

Special Features

  • Audio commentary by director 'David Nutter'
  • Eleven additional scenes not shown in theatres
  • Shocking and revealing alternate ending
  • Music video "Got You (Where I Want You)" (The Flys)
  • 4-page booklet featuring quotes and insights from the movie's hot young stars

Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Hot stars James Marsden ("Bella Mafia"), Katie Holmes ("Dawson's Creek") and Nick Stahl (The Thin Red Line) set the screen ablaze in this breathlessly fast-paced jolt-fest from veteran "X-Files" director David Nutter. Written by Scott Rosenburg (Con-Air) and featuring a hip soundtrackfrom the hottest bands around, this "clutch-your-armrest thriller" (Teen People) will pull you into the undercurrent of a deranged high school cliqueand drag you away screaming! Achieve, be excellent...and be afraid. For when the esteemed Blue Ribbon club of Cradle Bay High take their slogans too far, things in the small coastal town begin to go wrong. Dead wrong. And when a "dark sinister force" begins turning the school's curricularly challenged into the soulless, academic elitethree "outsiders" join in a desperate race to avoid becoming insidersand losing their individuality forever!


This paranoia-fueled thriller, more intelligent and imaginative than you would have reason to believe, owes a huge debt to The Stepford Wives with its premise of a goody-good high school clique programmed by an evil doctor to be wholesome, academically driven, and shining examples of clean living. Unlike its predecessor, though, David Nutter's film opts to open up its premise for everyone to see, diluting the scares but amplifying the creepy atmosphere. There's never any question of what's happening to the students of Cradle Bay High, who go from being druggies and sex fiends to the academically excellent Blue Ribbons, but it's a lot of fun to see these programmed teens run amok--and start killing people--when their hormones kick in. And considering they're all horny teenagers, this happens, oh, at least a few times a day. Model-perfect James Marsden, with stunning cheekbones and piercing blue eyes, is the new kid in town who stumbles on the plot with a little help from metalhead Nick Stahl. Moody Marsden stirs up trouble when he refuses to join up with the Blue Ribbons, prompting his concerned parents to consider signing him up for the program, especially after it turns Stahl into a vest-wearing, pep-rallying brainiac. The satire isn't entirely fulfilled (the evil kids hang out at the yogurt shop and spout inspirational platitudes), but once the action kicks in it's quite an enjoyable ride, thanks primarily to Bruce Greenwood (of The Sweet Hereafter) as the mad scientist behind it all and Katie Holmes (Go) as Marsden's love interest. Refusing the advances of the star football player and fighting gamely alongside Marsden, Holmes manages to deck a few bad guys with a fervor that squarely puts her in Linda Hamilton and Jamie Lee Curtis territory. With Steve Railsback as the colluding chief of police and Dan Zudovic as a janitor with a penchant for getting rid of "rats," rodent and otherwise. --Mark Englehart

Customer Reviews

I have seen many more bad movies which end like this one.
Oscar Kosola
Nick Stahl, Katie Holmes, and James Marsden do an amazing job as the lead roles.
A good fun movie with just enough suspense and fear to make you love it!
Arthur Rugg

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

23 of 28 people found the following review helpful By J. Lucas on March 14, 2000
Format: DVD
...of what can happen when a movie is created in a studio conference room. The sheer idiocy of what MGM did to director David Nutter's "Disturbing Behavior" is paralleled only by Miramax's hack job on "54". Good job, guys. We really didn't need to know anything about Steve's (James Marsden) brother's suicide did we? Sure, it would have given the film a whole new dimension, and would have made Steve's bond with Gavin (Nick Stahl) maybe mean just a little bit more within the context of the story. But, out it goes. And, hey, who needs that whole love scene with Rachel (Katie Holmes), anyway? We've already gotten the idea that these two dig each other - let's get on with the show! And wait just a gosh darned minute - do we really need anymore background on an important, pivotal character like Newberry (William Sadler)who gives his life to save the kids toward the end? Nah! And the ending - wouldn't it be so much more profound to have Gavin just kind of show up in some inner-city classroom with chip in his eye than for him to have the powerful final confrontation with Steve on the ferry? Absolutely! MGM screwed up royally with the final cut of this film but, through the miracle of DVD, audiences can now be treated to all of the above-mentioned deleted scenes (and several more that are so riveting you wonder why in the heck...) plus a fascinating audio commentary by David Nutter that gives us a new appreciation for this flawed but intriguing little film. Skip the VHS edition, but do check out the DVD.
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12 of 14 people found the following review helpful By CreepyT on November 27, 2004
Format: DVD
This film starts out well enough, with a family moving to the odd little town of Cradle Bay seeking a fresh start, and an escape from the haunting memory of a son and brother who committed suicide. When the family arrives, the town seems eerily too-good-to-be-true. The "kitschy" small town flare, complete with that "everybody knows everybody else" sentimentality, is almost nauseating. How very cliché (can we say "Stephen King?").

When the family's two remaining children (one of them being James Marsden's character, Steve Clark) head out for their first day of school, it becomes easy to discern, to the viewer at least, that something is horribly awry. Sure, the usual high school cliques are present. However, they seem far too exaggerated. For example, the omnipotent "Blue Ribbons" (a.k.a. "jocks") are the school's best athletes, as well as the school's most academically inclined students. Few exceptions aside, is this generally the case? I think not. Furthermore, these students hang out at a yogurt shoppe. It's no longer the 50's, and most high schoolers have other various hang-outs. Yet another clue that should give the new arrivals some insight as to the odd goings-on in Cradle Bay. However, when Nick Stahl's character (Gavin) attempts to inform Steve Clark of the evil plot that is behind the Blue Ribbons and their oddly uniform characters, Steve remains clueless. It takes Gavin becoming a Blue Ribbon himself to spark the light bulb in Steve's head, and he then decides to discover the root of the evil.

With the help of a fellow student, Rachel (Katie Holmes), and a very cheesily written but well acted school janitor (Dan Zudovic), Steve uncovers the extremely "Stepford Wives-esque" plot.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Ian Williams on December 3, 2005
Format: DVD
Most people in these reviews(and everywhere else) bash this film on a level that should be reserved for the Hulk. They either fail to take into account or choose to ignore the fact that it is a rags to riches film in terms of coming from the shallowest, campiest and most cliched of genres(teen movies) to some of the best social commentary and overall psychological creepiness around. First off, the acting, for the lines, is great. Whatever bs the reviewers feed you, they did great with their lines, and this movie still lists on my top ten good bad movies of all time, if not #1.

The Bad Points:

cut a lot of stuff that added depth to the story, though some of it did hurt pacing a lot.

characters needed to be more fleshed out. This is the most common complaint, though it isnt really fair, since almost all movies except super duper high budget ones suffer from things like this, due to time limitations and such from their tight budget.

Campy as all hell, and i loved it. If you dont like campy movies, fine, but dont go in expecting a teen movie to be shakespeare and i wont cut off your breeding rights for the sake of humanity.

Over the top and cliched. The most valid complaint there is. It's really again a question of two things they didnt have: budget/filming time. If they had the budget of even a third of a LotR movie maybe this would have been movie of the year, instead of a campy teen flick. or maybe not. But anyways, it's like being given a broken erector set and doing the best with what you have.

And now the good:

soundtrack: awesome as hell, if you're into rock music at all. If not, the previews should have cued you in. Also totally appropriate to the scenes it plays in, outlining the already painful teen angst and whatnot.
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