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The Contract (2006)

Morgan Freeman , John Cusack , Bruce Beresford  |  R |  DVD
3.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (114 customer reviews)

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Product Details

  • Actors: Morgan Freeman, John Cusack, Jamie Anderson, Alice Krige, Megan Dodds
  • Directors: Bruce Beresford
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Closed-captioned, Color, Dolby, NTSC, Subtitled, Widescreen
  • Language: English
  • Subtitles: Spanish
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 2.35:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: R (Restricted)
  • DVD Release Date: July 24, 2007
  • Run Time: 96 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (114 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B000P0I4O4
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #29,844 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "The Contract" on IMDb

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Editorial Reviews

The only thing standing between an assassin and his target is a father who must protect his son.

While on a hiking trip to reconnect with his son after the death of his wife, Ray Keene (John Cusack) stumbles into a nightmare scenario of paid assassins and ex-military guns-for-hire. Frank Cardin (Morgan Freeman) is attempting to fulfill a contract to assassinate a high profile businessman when things go arwy and he ends up in the custody of the U.S. Marshalls. After an ill-fated attempt by his compatriots to free him Frank finds himself in the custody of ex-lawman Ray and his son (Jamie Anderson). As the trio tries to make their way back to civilization they are relentlessly pursued by Frank's friends who are intent on freeing their leader in order to collect on the contract. But one pursuer may be more foe than friend.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
37 of 41 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars The contrarian December 3, 2007
Format:Amazon Instant Video
After seeing all the one star reviews, I almost didn't watch this movie. I'm glad I ignored them. I actually liked it. Question. How many action movies have you seen where one untrained guy or a few untrained people go against all odds fighting highly trained, well equipped mercenaries, rouge government agents, etc, etc? Answer: Just about all of them, so why complain it. For an action movie, I thought this was pretty good. Everyone has a right to their own opinion, but for those of you thinking about watching this, I have one friendly comment. Make up your own mind about it. If I decided not to watch movies based on bad reviews, I can tell I would've missed a lot of good movies. My opinion... good entertainment. Good popcorn movie. No one in this movie is going to win "best-actor"... but who cares!!!
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28 of 31 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Exciting political thriller... July 10, 2007
A well done, low-key medium octane thriller, The Contract works on quite a few levels offering up plentiful helpings of drama, thrills, action, and intrigue. The story revolves around a father and son learning to reconnect and trust one another under tense circumstances after becoming inadvertantly entangled in a dangerous criminal plot. Though there are certainly some scenes of violence, the film isn't buried in heavy amounts of gore or extreme violence and was the perfect Friday night thriller for us all including our 18 year old nephew. Fun, exciting movie; Morgan & Cusack are always in top form.
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22 of 26 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Enjoyable popcorn thriller... May 30, 2007
By MattW
Enjoyable if not derivitive thriller with perfunctory performances by leads Morgan Freemand and John Cusack. The storyline is thin, the characters are thin, but the film is beautifully shot, had some wonderful set pieces (the cliff scene) and some moments of nice suspense and action. A few of the action sequences are extremely well executed and surpisingly quite thrilling. On the downside, the movie definitely plays it too safe, there's certainly nothings screaming "extraordinary" in any sense, and is lacking verisimilitude. Still, it's a pleasant and very scenic journey, has some memorable moments, and John Cusack and Morgan Freeman even when only mediocre are still always fun to watch on screen.
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17 of 23 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Not Worth The Paper It's Written On January 7, 2008
I see John Cusack and Morgan Freeman's face on the cover of a DVD box, I buy it. Not that these guys have never made a bad movie, but they've certainly never made a movie worse. The same is true here, although the movie was already pretty bad to begin with.

Gym teacher Ray Keene (Cusack at his most vacant) has a pubescent son who is grappling with several dull plot contrivances (the Dead Mom and Infrequent Pot Smoking). In an attempt to bond with him before he goes too far down the wrong path, Ray takes his boy hiking. Turns out they BOTH end up down the wrong path, in the middle of which is escaped-assassin, Frank (Freeman, who gives new meaning to the phrase "phoning it in"). Frank is pursued by his team of assisstants (assassisstants?), who want badly to be paid, but not far behind are also a group of snobbish U.S. Marshalls who have their own agendas. It's Ray's job to avoid these two deadly (?) forces and bring Frank to justice.

No, wait. Ray's job is a gym coach, making the next several hours of his life a pretty amazing feat, as he scales bluffs, outwits and outmanuevers a whole cadre of military-trained mercenaries and political heavies that appear to have no skills beyond complaining about coffee and smirking smugly at the incompetent local lawmen. And, to be fair, the local lawmen are remarkably incompetent.

Who wrote this thing? Furthermore, how did they get Driving Miss Daisy's Bruce Beresford to direct? That must be, at least, how they got Freeman to lend his Oscar-winning weight to the title. And that would explain Cusack (because who WOULDN'T want to star next to the incomparable Freeman?).
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Multiple bonding August 15, 2007
Cusack, who is usually a nice guy, but sometimes also funny, for which he gets no chance here, goes on a bonding excursion with his teenage son, and comes back with a new girl friend and a new pal in the underworld.
The movie has all the ingredients for a speedy action thriller, and just how it fails to raise even the tiniest bit of suspense still is not clear to me. It is also not funny, except when the backwoods cop spills the coffee on the DC smartarse's shirt. That is hilarious.
Morgan Freeman does his best to assure everybody that we should not mistake him for a nice guy. Oddly, he fails, and ends up beloved by the audience. We even seem to want him to do his job. After all he wants to put in a solid day's job for his considerable pay.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Just too unbelievable July 28, 2007
I realize I must suspend disbelief some when I watch a movie but this movie was just too unbelievable even for a movie. People in serious car wrecks and escape without a scratch, 3 men in a helicopter crash that destroyed the helicopter and they all walk away. A guy doing precision shooting out of a bouncing helicopter. I couldn't even finish. Goes to show that two great stars can make a lemon movie.
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6 of 8 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Don't Waste Your Money or Time December 22, 2008
I like Morgan Freeman. He's an exceptional actor. I like him so much that I've never seen a movie that he was in that I didn't like. I tried to like this movie; I tried to find something redeeming in it, anything at all, but it's a zero. It's filled with guns that come from nowhere, magical shooting ability from a high school teacher/baseball coach who somehow is able to control a Steyr AUG on full auto with no former training, a helicopter crash in the woods that no only doesn't get anyone killed, but the occupants suffer not a single scratch, and hundreds of other mishaps that should not be overlooked by a director with the movie making skill of your average high school student. It has absolutely no suspense, no surprise ending (it's simply random), and very little action, basically there's nothing to like about this movie. It does have two good points. First, it's only an hour and half long, so you won't waste too much time. Second, if you look in the special features section you'll find previews to a couple of movies that look pretty good. If you've got to see it borrow it, it's not even worth renting.
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Won't play in my HD-A3
I also have the HD-A3 and contacted Toshiba - Here's their response:

"Thanks for writing!
If you have the latest firmware, and are having only problems with only one disc, then there may be a compatability issue between this one movie and the player. I suggest contacting the customer... Read More
Jan 25, 2008 by Eric Tietjen |  See all 2 posts
trailer is NOT cusack/freeman film Be the first to reply
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