David Gale (Spacey) is a man who has tried hard to live by his principles but in a bizarre twist of fate, this devoted father, popular professor and respected death penalty opponent finds himself on Death Row for the rape and murder of fellow activist Constance Hallaway (Linney).
With only three days before his scheduled execution, Gale agrees to give Pulitzer-hungry reporter Bitsey Bloom (Winslet) the exclusive interview she's been chasing.
But Bitsey soon realizes that this assignment is more than she bargained for, and that a man's life is in her hands. Putting her own safety in jeopardy, she frantically races to piece together the shocking events surrounding Constance's death, before it's too late
The Death Penalty: The Political Argument
By Alan Parker
Our film is a thriller. It would be hypocritical to pretend otherwise, cognizant as we all are of the commercial demands of the contemporary movie business. Perhaps, because of this alone, I still would have made the film. But I would also be remiss in pretending that this was the only reason that I was attracted to this project.
Personally I am very much against the death penalty for several reasons. Charles Randolph, the writer, is against it because he believes that it doesn't work. The actors - principally Kevin, Kate and Laura - have varying views, which probably mirror the myriad of current popular opinions.
Nevertheless, our film is not a political diatribe. It is a story about people who would go to great extremes because of their beliefs, and to that end the film is biased on their behalf. However, I most certainly hope that the film will provoke debate.
UK Release: March 14th 2003
US Release: February 21st 2003
Running Time: 130 mins
To watch interview footage with director Alan Parker select preferred option below:
Click here for an interview with Laura Linney.