Apt Pupil

Watch Apt Pupil

"If you don't believe in the existence of evil, you've got a lot to learn"
  • R
  • 1998
  • 1 hr 51 min
  • 6.7  (41,410)
  • 51

Apt Pupil is a psychological thriller film released in 1998 and directed by Bryan Singer. The movie stars Ian McKellen, Brad Renfro, and Joshua Jackson in the lead roles. The film is based on Stephen King's novella of the same name, which was included in his book titled "Different Seasons." The movie revolves around the character of Todd Bowden (Renfro), a high school student who becomes fascinated with the Holocaust during a history class. He discovers that an elderly neighbor, Arthur Denker (McKellen), is a war criminal, living under a new identity. Todd confronts Arthur, and they form a twisted relationship in which Arthur tells Todd stories of his experiences during the war, while Todd becomes increasingly obsessed with uncovering Arthur's past crimes.

As Todd dives deeper into Arthur's past, his own mental and emotional state becomes increasingly troubled. Arthur's influence over Todd increases to the point where his grades start slipping, and his violent tendencies begin to surface. Meanwhile, Arthur becomes increasingly manipulative, and the audience is left wondering who is really controlling who.

The relationship between Todd and Arthur becomes more and more intense as the movie progresses. Their discussions become more philosophical, and the audience is left to ponder the limits of justice and morality. Is it right to hunt down war criminals, no matter how long ago their crimes were committed? And what toll does such a pursuit take on those who undertake it?

The performances of Ian McKellen and Brad Renfro are outstanding. McKellen brings a haunting and enigmatic quality to Arthur's character, making it difficult to discern his true motives. Renfro, on the other hand, portrays Todd's descent into darkness with chilling realism. The chemistry between the two actors is palpable, making their complex and disturbing relationship all the more fascinating to watch.

Joshua Jackson also delivers a noteworthy performance as Todd's friend, who becomes concerned about his increasingly erratic behavior. Though his role is smaller than the other two main actors, he offers a necessary perspective on the events unfolding between Todd and Arthur.

The movie is shot in a way that creates an ominous and uneasy atmosphere. The cinematography and soundtrack add to the uneasy feeling, creating a sense of foreboding that gets under the skin of the audience. The tone is stark and somber, with very little humor or levity to relieve the tension.

Overall, Apt Pupil is a thought-provoking and unsettling film that explores dark themes such as obsession, guilt, and moral ambiguity. It challenges the audience to confront their own beliefs about justice and morality, and does so with a level of intensity that is rarely seen in modern cinema.

Apt Pupil is a 1998 drama with a runtime of 1 hour and 51 minutes. It has received moderate reviews from critics and viewers, who have given it an IMDb score of 6.7 and a MetaScore of 51.

Apt Pupil
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Apt Pupil is available to watch free on The Roku Channel Free. It's also available to stream, download and buy on demand at Amazon Prime, Apple TV, Amazon, Google Play and Vudu. Some platforms allow you to rent Apt Pupil for a limited time or purchase the movie and download it to your device.
  • Release Date
  • MPAA Rating
  • Runtime
    1 hr 51 min
  • Language
  • IMDB Rating
    6.7  (41,410)
  • Metascore