The Ninth Gate (2000)

 ●  English ● 2 hrs 13 mins

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Fast-paced and fiery, this dark thriller delves into the adventures of the money-driven dealer Dean Corso, who is a rare-books expert and partner of Bernie, the owner of a bookstore. He is contacted by the renowned collector of books about the devil Boris Balkan, who has just acquired the rare The Nine Gates of the Kingdom of Shadows from the collector Andrew Telfer, to verify whether his book is authentic or a forgery. Balkan explains that the book was written by the writer Aristide Torchia, in 1666, with Lucifer and he was burned at the stake with his entire work. There are only three exemplars of The Nine Gates and in accordance with the legend, its nine engravings form a riddle to conjure the devil. The skeptical Corso accepts the assignment and has to travel to Sintra, Portugal, and Paris, France, to contact the owners Victor Fargas and Baroness Kessler and find the genuine exemplar for Balkan. Meanwhile, he asks Bernie to hide the rare book. Before traveling to Europe, the widow Liana Telfer wants to retrieve the book and has sex with Corso, ..
See Storyline (May Contain Spoilers)

Cast: Frank Langella, Johnny Depp, Lena Olin

Crew: Roman Polanski (Director), Darius Khondji (Director of Photography), Wojciech Kilar (Music Director)

Genres: Mystery, Thriller

Release Dates: 10 Mar 2000 (India)

Tagline: Every book has a life of its own...

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Did you know? The bag that Dean Corso carries throughout the film is a small bag carried by French soldiers around 1935. It was used to carry ammunition and other small items. It is called a musette mle 35. Read More
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as Boris Balkan
as Dean Corso
as Liana Telfer
as Witkin
as Baroness Kessler
as The Girl
as Victor Fargas
Supporting Actor
as Bernie
Supporting Actor
as Pablo & Pedro Ceniza
as Liana's Bodyguard
as Andrew Telfer

Direction

Director
First Assistant Director
Second Assistant Director
Assistant Director

Production

Producer
Production Company
Executive Producer
Associate Production Company
Associate Producer
Line Producer

Distribution

Distributor

Camera and Electrical

Director of Photography
Still Photographer
Focus Puller

Music

Music Director

Sound

Sound Re-recording Mixer
Sound Editor
Foley Artist
Boom Operator

Art

Production Designer
Art Director
Set Decorator
Prop Master

Casting

Casting Director

Costume and Wardrobe

Costume Designer

Editorial

Makeup and Hair

Makeup Artist
Hair Stylist

Special Effects

Special Effects Technician

Stunts

Stunt Director
Stunt Coordinator
Stunt Double

Visual Effects

Visual Effects Supervisor
Visual Effects Studio
Digital Compositor
Film Type:
Feature Film
Language:
English
Colour Info:
Color
Frame Rate:
24 fps
Aspect Ratio:
2.35 : 1
Stereoscopy:
No
Taglines:
Every book has a life of its own...
Leave the unknown alone
The only thing more terrifying than searching for the Devil... is finding him.
Basada en la novela de Arturo Pérez Reverte: El Club Dumas.
Goofs:
Errors in Geography
As Corso asks the cab driver to wait while he goes to the bookstore, we see a motorcycle drive down Bleeker street. The license plate on the motorcycle are French, but Corso is in New York.

Factual Mistake
While showing off his collection to Corso, Fargas presents a "Dictionaire Infernal" by Jacques Collin de Plancy, which he says is a first edition from 1844. The first edition of this influential encyclopedia on superstition appeared in 1818, but its sixth edition, published in 1863, is prized for its illustrations, including 72 drawings of demons. The copy Fargas holds has a title page that is from the 1863 edition.

Factual Mistake
Front license plates in Switzerland don't have flags on them.

Factual Mistake
The Sintra railway station depicted is very romantic but makes no resemblance to the real one. In fact, it is Toledo railway station, built in 1919.

Factual Mistake
When Corso goes to the New York City Library for research, he pulls a copy of Books in Print from the shelf. All major libraries have used CDs of this reference guide for years. Also, he finds an illustration from the book he is researching. Books in Print never printed an illustration.

Revealing Mistakes
Dean Corso alternates between long filtered and both short and long non-filtered Lucky Strikes, yet the cigarette package is always the short non-filtered type.

Revealing Mistakes
Obvious stunt double when Balkas knocks Corso through the floorboards of the castle (near the end of the movie).

Revealing Mistakes
When Liana's bodyguard trips while assaulting Corso by the river, the "rocks" underneath him all shift and slide together. It's clearly a mat.

Revealing Mistakes
When Fargas is comparing both books for Corso, he supposedly opens both books to the same page to point out an error in printing. However, in the wide shot, it is clear the books are not both open to the same page. The book on the left has a very evident gap in one of the lines that the book on the right does not.

Character Error
Real collectors and dealers wouldn't handle books worth $1,000,000 without gloves, and they surely wouldn't smoke or drink wine directly over them. Also, a book that old (not to mention the XVIII century Don Quixote volumes he takes at the beginning) would not resist the way Corso keeps chucking it in his bag or the fact everybody seems to be handling around. Furthermore, no dealer in his right mind would try to photocopy a four centuries old book by placing it in a commercial machine face down and pressing it as depicted in the movie: such actions would inflict severe damage to the printing and binding, drastically affecting its worth. Regardless those characters who see the book as a tool rather than a priceless collectible, Corso and the brothers Ceniza are experts in the matter, and would never treat such rare and priceless books that way.

Character Error
When Corso describes Liana to Gruber, he says "Fortyish...", however, later on when Corso and The Girl lose track of the Liana's Rolls Royce, staring at the "St. Martin" sign, The Girl says to Corso : "Thirtyish..."

Continuity
When Corso and the girl arrive at the castle where the convention takes place, night is falling. As Corso leaves again, chasing Balkan, only a short time afterward, there is bright sunlight.

Continuity
When Corso returns to the Book Sellers, and finds the missing page from the book as it falls from atop the old bookcase, in the first shot, it is entirely gray with years of dust, as it floats to the floor. When he picks it up seconds later, it is completely clean on both sides.

Continuity
As Corso was hastily picking up his stuff from the table in the library of the baroness, the postcard with the castle picture drops to the floor. In the next scene, he immediately turns and moves towards the burning room (without picking it up). But later, at the restaurant, he finds the postcard in his bag.

Continuity
As Corso and the girl were having sex in front of the burning castle, in the wide angle scene they were lying parallel to the castle's façade, but in the close shot, the burning castle is right behind girl.

Miscellaneous
In the film, the book "The Nine Gates" displays an inverted pentagram on its cover to represent its Satanic content. However, the inverted pentagram only became associated with Satanism and evil in the late 19th century due largely to a work by the French occultist Eliphas Levi. As the books were said to be in their original 17th century Venetian bindings, the appearance of the inverted pentagram is an anachronism.

Audio/Video Mismatch
When Liana Telfer smashes up a bottle on Corso's head, the sound of glass breaking comes before the bottle actually makes contact.

Audio/Video Mismatch
When Corso is in the cab he asks the driver to stop at the payphone. The cab driver says, "No problem, sir" but his mouth is visible in the mirror and is clearly not speaking.
Trivia:
This movie is loosely based upon Arturo Pérez-Reverte's novel The Club Dumas (1993).

All of the engravings appearing in "The Nine Gates" were commissioned for the novel (and not the movie) by author Arturo Perez Reverte himself. The only exception is the one showing the Girl riding a dragon, which was altered to make it similar to the actress' face.

The director, Roman Polanski makes a cameo appearance in this movie as the taxicab driver who drops Corso off at the airport.

The cigarettes that Liana Telfer smokes are called Black Devils.

The bag that Dean Corso carries throughout the film is a small bag carried by French soldiers around 1935. It was used to carry ammunition and other small items. It is called a musette mle 35.

Chateau Puivert (the Ninth Gate) is called The Devil's Tower. It was used by the Cathars to defend themselves during the Albigensian crusades in the 13th century. The Cathars were gnostic Christians but Pope Innocent III considered them to be devil worshippers.

Chateau Puivert is first pictured in a painting behind Boris Balkan while in his penthouse office towards the beginning of the film.

The voice of one of the Ceniza twins (Pedro Ceniza) is dubbed by Roman Polanski himself.

The New York sequences were shot in Paris as Roman Polanski could not set foot into America because he was still wanted for his 1977 sex crime charges. The exterior locations were redressed with American-related details and the skyscraper seen in the opening and in Balkan's office were Translite material taken from Manhattan.

Chateau Puivert (the Ninth Gate) is called The Devil's Tower. It was used by the Cathars to defend themselves during the Albigensian crusades in the 13th century. The Cathars were gnostic Christians but Pope Innocent III considered them to be devil worshippers. The cigarettes that Liana Telfer smokes are called Black Devils. 24 of 24 found this interesting | Share this All of the engravings appearing in "The Nine Gates" were commissioned for the novel (and not the movie) by author Arturo Perez Reverte himself. The only exception is the one showing the Girl riding a dragon, which was altered to make it similar to the actress' face. 23 of 23 found this interesting | Share this Director Cameo: The taxi cab driver that drops Corso off at the airport is played by Roman Polanski. 34 of 35 found this interesting | Share this The bag that Dean Corso carries throughout the film is a small bag carried by French soldiers around 1935. It was used to carry ammunition and other small items. It is called a musette mle 35. 38 of 40 found this interesting | Share this Chateau Puivert (the ninth gate) is called the devil's tower. It was used by the Cathars to defend themselves during the Albigensian crusades in the 13th century. The Cathars were gnostic Christians but Pope Innocent III considered them to be devil worshipers. 15 of 15 found this interesting | Share this Chateau Puivert is first pictured in a painting behind Boris Balkan while in his penthouse office towards the beginning of the film. 13 of 13 found this interesting | Share this The voice of one of the Ceniza twins (Pedro Ceniza) is dubbed by Roman Polanski himself. 19 of 20 found this interesting | Share this The New York sequences were shot in Paris as Roman Polanski could not set foot into America because he was still wanted for his 1977 sex crime charges. The exterior locations were redressed with American-related details and the skyscraper seen in the opening and in Balkan's office were Translite material taken from Manhattan.

The book of the nine gates, they say was written in 1666.

The two booksellers Corso encounters in Toledo are actually the same actor, José López Rodero. Writer/director/producer Roman Polanski used a motion capture rig to use the same actor twice. The same man appears again later, playing two workmen cleaning out the bookstore. Rodero was an assistant director and production manager, not a professional actor. He was hesitant to accept these multiple parts.

The opening credits feature the camera floating through nine sets of doors before the film begins.

The Don Quixote that Corso buys at the beginning of the film is the very famous Joaquin Ibarra edition, published in 1780, which is generally considered as the best and most beautiful one. He also mentions the Hypnerotomachia Poliphili (Venice, 1499) printed by Francesco Colonna, dubbed "the most beautiful book ever printed". You can take a look at its amazing illustrations on the net.

When Corso is first seen researching on "The Nine Gates" in the library, the cover page of the book show the name of the author with the Latin phrase "Cum superiorum privilegio veniaque" (With Permission and License of One's Superiors) underneath it. In the novel, it is explained that this formula was used to prove the book in question was not infringing the teachings of the Church. However, the book was indeed forbidden, hinting that the author was acknowledging someone else -and not the Church- as his superiors.

Johnny Depp didn't take his usual $10 million fee for the opportunity to work with Roman Polanski.

The keypad combination to Boris Balkan's penthouse office and to his private library is "666".