Archbishop Richard Rushman is found murdered, his body mutilated, in his own residence. The prime suspect is Aaron Stampler (Edward Norton), an altar boy found leaving the scene covered in blood. Enter bigshot defense attorney Martin Vail (Richard Gere). Attracted by the high profile nature of the case, Vail volunteers his services and goes up against his old girlfriend, prosecutor Jane Venable (Laura Linney), and his old boss, U.S. Attorney John Shaugnessy (John Mahoney). In the course of the case, Vail becomes convinced of the innocence of the stuttering, country boy defendant. While trying to prove this, Vail unwittingly learns much more about the victim and the defendant.
"Primal Fear" around the world
While searching on the Internet, I came across sites in many languages. I was intrigued by them and the titles. In Germany, the film is called "Zwielicht", which directly translates to "twilight" or if phrased as ins zwielicht geraten, it means "to lay oneself open to suspicion". In Finland, Primal Fear was given the name "Alaston pelko". The word alaston is an adjective with the following meanings: bare, naked, nude, uncovered, undressed. Pelko is a noun with the following meanings: apprehension, awe, dismay, dread, fear, fright, funk, scare, terror. The title is "La Raíz del Miedo" in Mexico, which I believe translates to "The Root of the Fear". In Uruguay, both "La Raíz del Miedo" and "La verdad desnuda" have been used. Brazil chose the title "As Duas Faces de um Crime". Its "Las dos caras de la verdad" in Spain, "Schegge di paura" in Italy, "Et spørsmål om skyld" in Norway, and "IZVIRNI STRAH" in Slovenia. Not all countries change the name- Sweden, Denmark, Netherlands, Belgium, Switzerland, and Croatia keep it the way it is. Poland uses the English title accompanied by the Polish translation- "Primal Fear" (Lek Podstawowy).
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One picture on the page and this background are modifications of the original cover insert of the paperback version of William Diehl's novel "Primal Fear". This cover was later replaced with the film poster featuring Richard Gere. Retouching of the pictures have been performed to mask noticeable wear and tear that occurred on my own copy of the novel. This background has been darkened for contrast.
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