The Pledge
The Pledge

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The night he retires as a Nevada sheriff, Jerry Black pledges to the mother of a murdered girl that he will find the killer. Jerry doesn't believe the police arrested the right man; he discovers this is the third incident in the area in the recent past with victims young, blond, pretty, and small for their age. So he buys an old gas station in the mountains near the crimes in order to search for a tall man who drives a black station wagon, gives toy porcupines as gifts, and c... (Full plot summary below)

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Full Plot Details

The night he retires as a Nevada sheriff, Jerry Black pledges to the mother of a murdered girl that he will find the killer. Jerry doesn't believe the police arrested the right man; he discovers this is the third incident in the area in the recent past with victims young, blond, pretty, and small for their age. So he buys an old gas station in the mountains near the crimes in order to search for a tall man who drives a black station wagon, gives toy porcupines as gifts, and calls himself the wizard: clues from a drawing by the dead girl. Jerry's solitary life gives way to friendship with a woman and her small, blond daughter. Has Jerry neglected something that may prove fatal? Written by <[email protected]

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Movie Reviews

Chicago Sun-Times - 9/10 by Roger Ebert Penn and Nicholson take risks with the material and elevate the movie to another, unanticipated, haunting level.
Boston Globe - 9/10 by Jay Carr In its dark, relentless, devastatingly ironic way, The Pledge is an exhilarating movie, partly because it isn't afraid to be genuinely challenging.
Portland Oregonian - 9/10 by Kim Morgan One of the most aggressively ambiguous pictures of the year. There is a certain power to that.
New York Post - 9/10 by Lou Lumenick Not a film for all tastes, but it's a considerable artistic achievement.
Charlotte Observer - 9/10 by Lawrence Toppman Why on earth didn't Warner Bros. release this movie in time for Oscar consideration? Sure, it's bleak, depressing, sometimes painful to watch. But it would have been one of the best pictures of the year, and Nicholson (who hasn't done work of this caliber since "The Crossing Guard") might have been on the podium again.
Mr. Showbiz - 8/10 by Larry Terenzi Works best as a mood piece — the mood, however, is grim.
Dallas Observer - 8/10 by Robert Wilonsky It's not hard to see why actors love working with Penn, even in the smallest roles; he lets them speak monologues even when they're saying nothing at all.
Philadelphia Inquirer - 8/10 by Carrie Rickey It is understatement to say that Nicholson does some of the finest work of his career here, easily equaling "The Shining" for gargoyle monstrousness and "As Good as It Gets" for tortured humanism.
Rolling Stone - 8/10 by Peter Travers In crafting a fierce, fragmented, downbeat film about a character who makes the wrong decision as a man by being right as a cop, Penn flies in the face of what sells in Hollywood. Godspeed.
New York Magazine (Vulture) - 8/10 by Peter Rainer If Penn really lets these actors sing, his watchful camera also knows how to respect their silences.
The New York Times - 8/10 by Stephen Holden Not a pleasant film, but it is deeply, scarily rewarding.
Christian Science Monitor - 8/10 by David Sterritt The acting is excellent and Penn reconfirms his remarkable talent for muted, understated filmmaking that focuses on character and dialogue rather than spectacle and sensationalism.

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