The Ref

Watch The Ref

"They might be his hostages but what they're doing to this guy is criminal."
  • R
  • 1994
  • 1 hr 33 min
  • 6.9  (25,958)
  • 59

The Ref is a 1994 American black comedy film directed by Ted Demme and starring Denis Leary, Judy Davis, and Kevin Spacey. The movie follows a burglar named Gus (played by Denis Leary) who is on the run from the police after a failed robbery attempt. He takes a bickering suburban couple Lloyd (played by Kevin Spacey) and Caroline Chasseur (played by Judy Davis) hostage in their home on Christmas Eve.

Gus plans to hold the couple hostage until he can make his escape but quickly realizes their problems are much worse than his. Lloyd and Caroline's marriage is completely falling apart, and their constant fighting makes Gus's mission much harder. As the night goes on, Gus acts as an accidental therapist to the couple, trying to help them work through their issues and resolve their problems.

The movie is shot in a dark and comical tone, providing a mix of crude language and witty dialogue. The three main actors deliver outstanding performances as they play off each other's personalities, creating an intense dynamic on screen. Leary, in particular, shines as he showcases his unique comedic charm, while Spacey and Davis play their roles with precision and depth.

Throughout the movie, the audience witnesses the transformation of these characters, as the night progresses and the trio finds themselves in increasingly bizarre and dangerous situations. The plot is cleverly constructed with multiple twists and turns, as Gus's leadership skills, Lloyd's work problems, and Caroline's infidelity all come into play.

The setting of the movie adds to the overall tone and atmosphere of the story. The majority of the film takes place in the Chasseur's house, which is draped in Christmas decorations, creating an ironic contrast to the tension and turmoil within. The holiday-themed elements provide a unique background to the unfolding drama, and the narrative takes full advantage of this to provide both laughs and suspenseful moments.

The Ref also explores different themes throughout its runtime, including the struggle to communicate in relationships, the concept of forgiveness, and people's tendency to become trapped in routines. The movie explores these ideas with nuance, never falling prey to trite or cliched conclusions.

In the end, The Ref is a clever and engaging movie that entertains and provides a unique look at the nuances and complexities of human interactions. With excellent performances and a strong screenplay, the movie holds up well over time and remains a classic black comedy. While the movie may not be suitable for everyone, those who appreciate dark humor and complex character dynamics are sure to find plenty to enjoy in The Ref.

The Ref is a 1994 comedy with a runtime of 1 hour and 33 minutes. It has received moderate reviews from critics and viewers, who have given it an IMDb score of 6.9 and a MetaScore of 59.

The Ref
Description
Where to Watch The Ref
The Ref is available to watch, stream, download and buy on demand at Amazon, Google Play, YouTube VOD and Vudu. Some platforms allow you to rent The Ref for a limited time or purchase the movie and download it to your device.
  • Release Date
    1994
  • MPAA Rating
    R
  • Runtime
    1 hr 33 min
  • Language
    English
  • IMDB Rating
    6.9  (25,958)
  • Metascore
    59