Gamer

2009

Gamer

Critics Consensus

With all of the hyperkinetic action and none of the flair of Mark Neveldine and Brian Taylor's earlier work, Gamer has little replay value.

30%

TOMATOMETER

Total Count: 80

39%

Audience Score

User Ratings: 251,878
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Movie Info

Reality and video games merge in this high-concept sci-fi action thriller from Crank creators Mark Neveldine and Brian Taylor. In the not too distant future, mind-control technology allows humans to control the actions and movements of other humans, allowing reclusive billionaire Ken Castle (Michael C. Hall) to create the ultimate video game. It's called "Slayers," and it's a mass-scale, multiplayer online first-person shooter that's as controversial as it is popular. In the world of gamers, Simon (Logan Lerman) is a rock star; miraculously managing to keep his character alive week after week, he racks up frags like Billy Mitchell jumps barrels. But unlike Mitchell's Mario, Simon's video-game avatar is a living, breathing human being named Kable (Gerard Butler). Defying the odds to keep Kable running and gunning though even the most explosive battles, Simon captures the imagination of a global audience. Torn from his family, thrown into prison, and forced to fight against his will, Kable realizes that his only hope of ever seeing his family again is to somehow escape the game, reclaim his identity, and expose Castle's dehumanizing technology on live television. ~ Jason Buchanan, Rovi

Cast

Zoe Bell
as Sandra
Michael C. Hall
as Ken Castle
Aaron Yoo
as Humanz Dude
Terry Crews
as Hackman
John De Lancie
as Chief of Staff
Jonathan Chase
as Geek Leader
Noel Gugliemi
as Upgrade Guard
Kyra Sedgwick
as Gina Parker Smith
Dan Callahan
as Backup Geek
Keith Jardine
as Mean Slayer
Jarvis W. George
as Brown Soldier #1
Jai Stefan
as Brown Soldier #2
Richard Machowicz
as Blue Soldier #1
Ken Smith
as Lifer
Henry Hayashi
as Razorblade
Dylan Kenin
as Train Guard
Keith David
as Agent Keith
Maggie Lawson
as Female News Host #1
James Roday
as News Co-Host #1
Sam Witwer
as Caseworker
Kate Mulligan
as Sorority Chick
Med Abrous
as Pig Face Ron
Ashley Rickards
as 2Katchapredator
Nikita Ramsey
as Kumdumpsta #1
Jade Ramsey
as Kumdumpsta #2
Mimi Michaels
as Stikkimuffin
Sadie Alexandru
as Society Victim
Ariana Scott
as Sissypuss Shelley
Antoinette Antonio
as Female News Host #2
Antoinette Anthony
as Female News Host #2
Donnie Smith
as News Co-Host #2
Lloyd Kaufman
as Genericon
Stephanie Mace
as Geek Girl
Adam Loeb
as Ben Richard
Fred Loeb
as Society Concierge
View All

News & Interviews for Gamer

Critic Reviews for Gamer

All Critics (80) | Top Critics (15) | Fresh (24) | Rotten (56)

  • In the press materials Mr. Butler informs us enthusiastically that the movie "has all the hallmarks of Neveldine's and Taylor's sick, yet genius minds." At least he's half right.

    Sep 8, 2009 | Rating: 1/5
  • Bodies and buildings blow up but this is carnage of the most lacklustre sort, with any momentum petering out long before it's "game over."

    Sep 8, 2009 | Rating: 1.5/4 | Full Review…
  • It's a deeply cynical and joyless point of view, completely lacking in the winking visual style that made Crank worth a look.

    Sep 8, 2009 | Rating: 1.5/5
  • Crass, nonstop action triumphs over narrative and character in this movie-length simulation of a video game.

    Sep 8, 2009
  • As the brutish Kable, Gerard Butler must find out who's pulling his strings, but it's the audience whose chain gets yanked by this headache-inducing techno-violent mishmash.

    Sep 8, 2009 | Rating: D | Full Review…
  • Directors Mark Neveldine and Brian Taylor were responsible for the delirious Crank and Crank 2 but left the magic behind.

    Sep 8, 2009 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for Gamer

  • Nov 25, 2013
    A film that went way out of the market that everyone expected it to, but it might have shot itself in the foot by doing so. I'm the first to say that when I initially watched the trailer, I most certainly did think that Gamer was going to be another cut/paste Hollywood Action job in the vein of The Condemned or Death Race 2. A very incorrect assumption, but it probably would have done better critically if I was right. In Gamer, "Kable" (Gerard Butler - Dracula 2000, Attila, Reign of Fire, Beowulf & Grendel, 300, RocknRolla, Law Abiding Citizen, How to Train your Dragon) is a convicted felon who takes the opportunity to earn his freedom if he survives through thirty rounds of live-to-air armed combat, he wants to escape so that he can get back together with his wife "Nika" (Amber Valletta - Transporter 2, Dead Silence, Premonition) and they together could raise their daughter. Only catch is, it's not up to Kable to survive, he, along with all other participants in the broadcast death-match, have had their brains altered by billionaire genius Ken Castle (Michael C. Hall - Dexter) so that they can be remotely controlled by gamers from all across the world. Simon Silverton (Logan Lerman - The Butterfly Effect, The Number 23, 3:10 to Yuma, Percy Jackson & the Olympians: The Lightning Thief, The Three Musketeers) is in control of Kable, and he's gotten him through 27 rounds by the time the film starts up. Castle has also performed his nefarious works on others, whom are paid handsomely to be operated by people in a sadistic virtual environment not unlike The Sims. So it's all very interesting and confusing, and makes for a fresh film, but in reality, Kable killing in a simulated warzone people would have made a great Death Race-ish action movie in and of itself; Nika and the way she is used in "Society" would have made a great sci-fi drama all by its lonesome; and the barely-there character of Simon could easily have gone solo in a film where he controls real-life people like a game. Instead these three worlds are all meshed together and it doesn't work as well as it could have. Not to say I don't like Gamer, it's quite a bit better and intellectual than I'd envisioned it after initially viewing the trailer in my Y12 Media Class. Problematic is the fact that most of this intellect goes towards the social commentary of how sick we are that we take pleasure in violence in the media, when the whole marketing campaign ran to sell the film as an entertaining gun-ridden bloodbath. And for the most part that's exactly what it is. Neveldine and Taylor (the kids behind Crank, Crank: High Voltage and to some extent Pathology) still hold onto some of their technogeek wiles and try to insert them into Gamer, which unfortunately can't have the same effect as they did in their earlier, mor light-hearted work. A bit of the old Ultraviolence never goes astray in my books, and though I most certainly did enjoy Gamer, it's multi faceted film styles have all been done better elsewhere. 69% -Gimly
    Gimly M Super Reviewer
  • May 14, 2013
    This is a really bad film. The script was so poorly written, Butler's considerable talents were left to wither on the vine.
    Christian C Super Reviewer
  • Apr 30, 2013
    Gamer offers a promising concept: Gaming now can use real human as the player, in counter strike, if they die, they die in real life. Gamer is a satirical dystopian science fiction that can satisfy all the video gamers that watch it. The film offers great special effects, lots of actions and buckets of blood and gore. However, it could really use some improvement in acting. I love how futuristic the film is, though the messages are of left wing agendas. It's a must see for the geeks.
    Sylvester K Super Reviewer
  • Nov 11, 2012
    The film was so so. It reminded me of movies like The Running Man, The Hunger Games, and Death Race. It even reminded me of movies like Johnny Kneumonic and Universal Soldier. It needed a rewrite. Some scenes were way over the top. On the positive, there were some good performances in the film. Gerard Butler was very good in the leading role. Michael C. Hall is a great villain in the film. Logan Lerman was ok in his supporting role, but wish he had more screen time. Ludacris's character reminded me of Ice T's character from the movie Johnny Kneumonic. Also the music in the film was really good. Despite the flaws, the film is still entertaining. I thought it is better than both of the Crank films.
    Sol C Super Reviewer

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