The man in the background

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German title The man in the background
Original title Someone to Watch Over Me
Country of production United States
original language English
Publishing year 1987
length 103 minutes
Age rating FSK 16
Director Ridley Scott
script Howard Franklin
production Thierry de Ganay ,
Harold Schneider ,
Ridley Scott
music Michael Kamen
camera Steven B. Poster
cut Claire Simpson

The man in the background (Original title: Someone to Watch Over Me ) is an American thriller from 1987 . The Director led Ridley Scott , the writer wrote Howard Franklin . The main roles were played by Tom Berenger and Mimi Rogers .


Wealthy Claire Gregory attends a party. She happens to be a witness when Joey Venza murdered a man. Venza is then arrested and identified by Gregory as a murderer.

Venza is released because of a formal error by the police. Gregory is then placed under police protection, Mike Keegan is one of their guards. He and Gregory start an affair.

A policeman is injured when a killer hired by Venza breaks into Gregory's apartment. Mike kills the killer, but his affair becomes known to the superiors, who suspend him from duty. He and his wife Ellie split up.

Venza raids Keegan's home and takes his family hostage. He demands that Gregory be handed over to him. Mike goes into the house and distracts the hostage taker's attention. Ellie gets the gun hidden in the house and kills the criminal.

Mike hugs his family. The arrived Gregory sees it and goes away.


Roger Ebert scoffed in the Chicago Sun-Times of October 9, 1987, that there are films whose basic idea can be summarized in a single sentence. “The man in the background” belongs to this category. Ebert heavily criticized the script for focusing on the character of Claire Gregory instead of the character of Ellie Keegan .

The lexicon of international films described the film as " told too straightforwardly " and criticized the low tension. Only “ some sophisticated camera settings ” were praised.


Ridley Scott was nominated for an award from the Festival Internacional de Cinema do Porto in 1988 . Steven B. Poster was nominated for the American Society of Cinematographers Award in 1988 .


The filming took place in New York City and on the ship RMS Queen Mary . The box office in the cinemas of the United States was 2.9 million US dollars .

Web links

Individual evidence

  1. ^ Film review by Roger Ebert