This movie is The Thirteenth Floor.
IMDb wrote: The Thirteenth Floor (1999)
Director: Josef Rusnak
Genre: Mystery / Sci-Fi / Thriller
Runtime: 100 min
Country: Germany / USA
SoundMix: DTS / Dolby Digital / SDDS
Certification: Malaysia:U (cut version) / Malaysia:18SG (uncut version) / Argentina:13 / Australia:M / Chile:14 / France:U / Germany:12 (w) / Norway:15 / Peru:14 / Singapore:NC-16 / Spain:13 / Sweden:15 / UK:15 / USA:R / Iceland:16 / Canada:14 (Nova Scotia) / Canada:AA (Ontario) / Philippines:PG-13 / Brazil:Livre
- Craig Bierko ....... Douglas Hall/John Ferguson/David
- Armin Mueller-Stahl ....... Hannon Fuller/Grierson
- Gretchen Mol ....... Jane Fuller/Natasha Molinaro
- Vincent D'Onofrio ....... Jason Whitney/Jerry Ashton
- Dennis Haysbert ....... Detective Larry McBain
- Steven Schub ....... Detective Zev Bernstein
- Jeremy Roberts ....... Tom Jones
- Rif Hutton ....... Joe
- Leon Rippy ....... Jane's Lawyer
- Janet MacLachlan ....... Ellen
- Brad William Henke ....... Cop #1 (as Brad Henke)
- Burt Bulos ....... Bellhop
- Venessia Valentino ....... Concierge
- Howard S Miller ....... Chauffeur
- Tia Texada ....... Natasha's Roomate
The Thirteenth Floor starts in 1937 in Los-Angeles where the audience follows a certain Mr Fuller (Armin Mueller-Stahl) in a magnificent jazzbar. There Mr Fuller entrusts a bartender (Vincent D'Onofrio) with an envelope to be given to the man who will come to seek it and will indenfy himself as "Douglas Hall".
Mr Fuller insists on these instructions and then leave the bar to be found murdered in the street in ... 1998 where he had transported himself just before.
Detective Larry McBain (Dennis Haysbert) inherites of the case and quickly his suspicions go toward Douglas Hall (Craig Bierko) who happens to work with Hannon Fuller since 6 years for Intergraph Computer Systems, a cutting edge artificial intelligence firm.
Hannon Fuller designated as "the Einstein of our generation" is behind a totally new simulation which was actually where Fuller was at the begining of the movie. Fuller's testament, modified a few weeks before his death, designates Douglas Hall as the new head of ICS which only makes him appear more suspicious to the detective's eyes. Especially when Fuller's daughter(Gretchen Mol) appears from nowhere and says her father told her he wanted to close the company.
Douglas Hall himself feels unconfident about what has happened as he suffers from a total amnesia regarding the night of the murder and he has found a skirt full of blood in his bathroom the morning after.
The only hint at his disposal is a message let on his answering machine by Fuller just before he has been murdered, a message mentionning the letter.
Looking to find out what has happened to his former boss and friend, Douglas knows that all the answers he's looking for are in the fictious 1937 of their simulation.
None other than Fuller has actually tested the simulation and Douglas is just astonished by the result. All seems so realistic, so living, so TRUE.
In this world Douglas begins his inquiry about his friend's occupation, going through all evidences to the truth is seeking. This inquiry will drives him to answers which will go way beyond the murder of his friend...
When The Thirteenth Floor was released, people had already seen Dark City and the first Matrix and at once The Thirteenth Floor has been compared to these master-pieces of SF cinema without being able to handle this competition which certainly musthavebeen compromissed its diffusion and its success.
You don't find in The Thirteenth Floor the action you find in Matrix, nor the "magnificient darkness" Proyas masters so well in Dark City.
But, you do find in The Thirteenth Floor a very good story around a very well handed SF plot. Sadely the end is a bit too clichÃ© but never the less it does work.
It does because the story is well served by a great casting and a very very good work on the picture. The Los-Angeles of 1937 as a kind of sepia filter which works great, especially with the very realistic sets. As Douglas Hall the spectator is amazed by this simulation
I also find the SFX are perfect and the story well mastered as, 7 years after, The Thirteenth Floor hasn't grown "has been",quite the contrary actually. I hadn't watched it since quite a long time and I've had much pleasure to see it again tonight on my dvdplayer.
The Thirteenth Floor is not a master-piece but should not be missed for those who are interrested by SF.
Imho, this movie still deserves today a very well earned 4/6.