Face/Off

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Face/Off is a 1997 film about a revolutionary medical technique that allows an undercover agent to take the physical appearance of a major criminal and infiltrate his organization.

Directed by John Woo. Written by Mike Werb and Michael Colleary .
It's like looking in a mirror - only not taglines

Dialogue[edit]

Sean Archer: Any word from the LAPD intelligence? If there IS such a thing?
Loomis: Not yet, sir.
Sean Archer: Of course not, because we're a covert anti-terrorist team that is so secret, that when we snap our fingers nothing happens!

[Archer and Castor are in a Mexican standoff in the hangar]
Sean Archer: [jams his pistol into Castor's neck] Give up, Castor! Your time's up! [beat]
Castor Troy: [laughs] Well, you better hit me, Sean, 'cause you got only one bullet left!
Sean Archer: So do you. [He stands up and the two point pistols at each other's heads]
Castor Troy: Wow! We've got something in common! We both know our guns.
Sean Archer: What we don't have in common is that I don't care if I live, and you do.
Castor Troy: Sean, that hurts. You're not having any fun, are you, Sean? Why don't you come with us? Try terrorism-for-hire. We'll blow some shit up! It's more fun!
Sean Archer: Shut the fuck up!
Castor Troy: You watch your fucking mouth! I'm about to unleash the biblical plague "Hell"-A. deserves!
Sean Archer: Bullshit.
Castor Troy: Oh, oh, oh, I see I-I'm bluffing. Maybe I am, but then maybe I am not. Besides, what would you do when you lock me up? You'd drive your wife and kid crazy! Say, how is your daughter, anyway? Your... your darling Jamie, your little peach? Is she ripe? Ri-ripe-ripe-ri RIPE!! [pulls the trigger but there is no bullet. Castor drops his gun]

[Archer sits down to interrogate Sasha]
Sean Archer: Hello, Sasha. When was the last time you saw Castor Troy?
Sasha Hassler: Who cares? He's dead.
Sean Archer: Answer the question.
Sasha Hassler: I know my rights. I don't have to answer shit.
Sean Archer: You're right. But know this: you're a convicted felon, on probation for harboring Castor Troy. One phone call from me and your son will end up in a foster home. [beat]
Sasha Hassler: [takes a deep breath] I understand why you would use such a threat. But you try to take him away from me, I swear to you....I haven't seen him for years.
[Archer looks at her for a moment. He then gets up and goes to another interrogation room where Dietrich is sitting]
Sean Archer: This reeks of you. It's got your signature all over it. [Dietrich gives a hard look at Archer]
Dietrich Hassler: Maybe. But you ain't got nothing on me, and you know it.
Sean Archer: Maybe so. But I can keep you within city limits, or I can talk to your sister again. She's right outside. [Archer backs away from Dietrich] Only this time, I'll be nice. [He walks around the table Dietrich is sitting at]
Dietrich Hassler: Hey, Sean, how's your dead son?
[Dietrich breaks out laughing. Archer suddenly pushes him to the floor by the neck and jams his pistol into Dietrich's eye]
Dietrich Hassler: I don't know anything! Okay! Okay, I heard something about the 18th, but that's all I know! [Archer puts his pistol away]

Tito Blondi: Great, so we've got a date. Now where the hell's the damn bomb?
Sean Archer: Only Pollux Troy will know that.
Hollis Miller: It's your call, Sean.
Sean Archer: Does Lazarro know your plan?
Hollis Miller: No, this is a black bag operation. Strictly off the books. You can't tell Lazarro, and you can't tell your wife.
Sean Archer: [rubs his cheeks] Oh, god. What are you asking me to do? Okay, let's see. You're asking me to break the law, risk my neck, and you're asking me to put in the dark all the people that're above me and trust me. [He takes a deep breath] I'll do it.

[Archer has entered Erewhon posing as Castor]
Burke Hicks: What's the matter, pal? Dontcha remember the little people? [Archer turns and recognizes him]
Sean Archer: Burke Hicks.
Burke Hicks: Yes.
Sean Archer: I bust... [catches himself] I believe Sean Archer busted you for stalking the UN Secretary General.
Burke Hicks: Oh, no, Archer framed me. I had nothing to do with that. Word was you got wasted. [beat]
Sean Archer: You want to see what "wasted" looks like, little man?

[Archer-as-Castor has gotten into a fight with Dubov]
Walton: I stop the fights. Not you.
Sean Archer: When I get out of here -
Walton: If you get out of here.
Sean Archer: I'm gonna have you fired.

[Archer, with Castor's face, sits down with Pollux]
Pollux Troy: Not feeling very coordinated lately, are you?
Sean Archer: [with a low voice] Listen, bro. I am soooo fried. If the psychos find out I'm this wacky we're both dead meat.
Pollux Troy: Shock treatment? What's the matter, did they operate? [Pollux touches Archer's face]
Sean Archer: I was in a coma! Jesus, you're still so frickin' paranoid! Aren't they giving you your medication in here?
Pollux Troy: What was my medication?
Sean Archer: [sighing in "exasperation"] Pollux, I hand-fed you those pills for years. Vivex! I haven't forgotten that. It's just everything else. My reflexes, my synapses, it's all like a... tab of bad Quantrax. I don't even know why that fucking Yeti jumped me the other day.
Pollux Troy: Dubov? You had a sex sandwich with his wife and his sister the night he was sent here.
Sean Archer: Well, that explains why he was so upset. We're gonna blow up L.A., bro. Ain't that cool?
Pollux Troy: Sure, rub my nose in it, why don't you. Ten million dollar design and those militia nut jobs get to keep their cash.
Sean Archer:' It's so fucking unfair! That bomb you built does deserve an audience. I mean, it's a work of art, it belongs in the Louvre.
Pollux Troy: Yes, it does. Oh well, I guess the L.A. Convention Center will just have to do.
Sean Archer: [rejoices to himself] Thank you.
Pollux Troy: For what?
Sean Archer: Oh, bro. You are so fuckin' pathetic.

[Archer is posing as Castor at Erwhon when a guard opens his cell door]
Guard: You've got a visitor.
[Cut to Archer entering the visitor's room. The magnetic boots clamp into place. A door then opens, revealing Castor Troy with Archer's old face. As they exchange looks, Castor smirks. He then cocks his head, walks across the room, and eventually breaks into a wide grin]
Castor Troy: Oooooo-WEE, you're good lookin'! Ya hot!
[Castor steps towards Archer]
Castor Troy: It's like looking in a mirror, only not. [Castor walks around Archer]
Sean Archer: Troy?
Castor Troy: Now that is between us. OK?
Sean Archer: But you were--were, were, in--in--in-
Castor Troy: In a coma?
Sean Archer: --in-in-in-
Castor Troy: Nothing like having your face cut off to disturb your sleep! Read the newspaper lately? [thrusts an article in Archer's face headlined "Deadly Inferno at Walsh Institute", with Dr. Walsh's picture]
Sean Archer: You killed them?
Castor Troy: Yeah well. Beats paying the bill, huh? I mean, come on, uh, if a face lift costs five grand...[shows Archer's wedding ring on his hand] ...see anything you like!!??? [In his mind, Archer pictures Tito, bound and gagged alongside Miller and Dr. Walsh, being doused with gasoline]
Sean Archer: Tito! [In a flashback, Castor drops his cigarette lighter into a puddle of gasoline, sparking a large inferno]
Castor Troy: I torched all the evidence that proves you're you, okay? So, wow! [looks at watch] Looks like you're going to be in here for THE NEXT HUNDRED YEARS!! Now, I have got to go. I've got a government job to abuse and [whispers into Archer's ear] a lonely wife to fuck. Oh, I'm sorry...make love to! God, I miss that face! [He licks the side of Archer's face. Archer promptly grabs Castor by the neck, throws him to the floor, and attempts to strangle him]

[Castor drives into Archer's neighborhood and glances at the various houses as he drives by]
Castor Troy: Look at this place. I'm in hell! I may never do a hard on again.
[Eve is just coming down the front steps when Castor drives past the house. He recognizes her a moment too late and slams on the brakes]
Castor Troy: Oh, yes. Here we go.
[He speedily backs the car up to the curb. As he gets out, he pulls down his sunglasses and smirks at Eve]
Dr. Eve Archer: Well I suppose it was only a matter of time before you forgot where we lived.
Castor Troy: Come on, give me a break. Every house on this block looks the same. [walks around Eve] The nice part of you....Eve. My one and only Eve.
Dr. Eve Archer: So how was your vital assignment?
Castor Troy: Which one was that?
Dr. Eve Archer: [scoffs] How should I know, Sean? [beat]
Castor Troy: Oh! Oh! Oh! Oh! Oh, yes! The uh, the out-of-body experience, yes. That one.

[Castor finds Eve's diary in her desk drawer. He flips it open to a recent entry]
Castor Troy: "Date night. Fizzled again. We haven't made love in two months." What a loser. [He ponders, but suddenly hears "Papa's Got a Brand New Bag" playing. Cut to Jamie in her bedroom chatting on the phone with her boyfriend in just her underwear and t-shirt as the music plays on her stereo]
Jamie Archer: I got your email, Karl. The poem you sent me was pretty kinky. [Castor slowly pushes the door open]
Castor Troy: [inhales] The plot thickens... [Jamie looks up and glares at Castor]
Jamie Archer: [on the phone] Hang on a second. [She attempts to slam the door in Castor's face. Castor steps forward and keeps it from closing] I'll have to call you back. [hangs up] You're not respecting my boundaries.
Castor Troy: I'm coming in, Janie.
Jamie Archer: Janie? [Castor glances at Jamie's bed pillow, with her name stitched on it]
Castor Troy: I don't think you heard me, Jamie. You got something I crave. [Castor presses himself up against Jamie as he reaches around her to grab her cigarettes]
Jamie Archer: Clarissa left those here.
Castor Troy: Oh, well I won't tell mom if you don't. [He lights a cigarette]
Jamie Archer: When did you start smoking?
Castor Troy: You'll be seeing a lot of changes around here. [blows smoke rings in Jamie's face] Papa's got a brand new bag! OW! [Jamie laughs. Castor slowly walks out of the room singing along to the music]

[Castor walks into the FBI observation room as Wanda and Buzz watch Pollux eating a gourmet meal, singing opera, and waving his utensils like a conductor]
Buzz: Sir, we just wanted you to know....
Wanda: We're all really sorry about Tito.
Castor Troy: [sips his coffee] Oh, hey, shit happens, you know. So is our star witness talking?
Buzz: Yeah, about what kind of mustard he likes on his tongue sandwiches.
Wanda: That bomb is out there. We're almost out of time.
Castor Troy: [bites his lip] Hmmm.... [A door flies open and Lazarro comes into the room]
Victor Lazarro: Archer! [Castor turns to Lazarro] You made a deal with Pollux Troy. That isn't like you.
Castor Troy: Well, when all else fails, fresh tactics! [winks at Lazarro]
Victor Lazarro: Fresh? Let me tell you my fresh tactic: from now on, everything to do with this case goes through me, you understood?
Castor Troy: Hmmm.
Victor Lazarro: Good! Thanks.
[Lazarro leaves the office. Castor switches off the interrogation room video camera. Pollux rises as Castor comes in, chuckling]
Castor Troy: [turns off the recorder] You're supposed to be snitching and making me look good!
Pollux Troy: Look good?
Castor Troy: Mmm-hmm. [Castor sits down on the edge of the table]
Pollux Troy: Seeing that face on you makes me afraid my tiramisu might come back up.
Castor Troy: Well think about me. This nose. This hair. This ridiculous chin. [sighs] Brother, we're going straight.
Pollux Troy: Ooh, my goodness. Did you exchange brains as well?
Castor Troy: The first thing I need you to "confess" to is the location of the bomb.
Pollux Troy: What about our $10 million?
Castor Troy: What about "when I become an American hero for defusing the bomb?" What's that worth? Know that, thank you! Next question!
[The two laugh. Castor grins and wags a finger in Pollux's face]
Castor Troy: You're not the only one in the family with the brains.
Pollux Troy: No. Although now I am the only one with the looks.
Castor Troy: Touché.

[Castor-as-Archer has just returned to the office after being taken to the grave of Archer's son that he killed years ago]
Wanda: You turned your beeper off.
Castor Troy: Well, it's my son's birthday.
Wanda: Well, here's some poetic justice, sir: Castor Troy is dead.
Buzz: He got killed while trying to escape Erewhon. [Castor turns to them]
Castor Troy: Where's his body? I wanna see his body.
Wanda: It hasn't been recovered yet.
Castor Troy: [explodes] "It hasn't been recovered yet"?! [beat] Get the LAPD on this!
Wanda: Even if he is alive, Castor isn't stupid enough to come back to this city!
Castor Troy: You-you must trust me. He's already here.

[Archer as Castor and Dietrich with his gang discuss their plans and drink alcohol with some drugs]
Aldo: So, once we kidnap supercop, then what? [beat]
Sean Archer: Tiny... surgery. l'd like to take his- his face- off. [Makes a gesture like taking off his own face] Yes. Now, if you'll excuse me, l have to use the little boys wee-wee room.
Dietrich: Cas. You wanna take his face--
Sean Archer: Yes. His face - off! [Makes manipulations with his fingers at Dietrich's face] Eyes. Nose. Skin. lt's coming - off. [Pretends taking off his own face again]
Dietrich: [Reflectively makes a similar gesture] The face... off. [Archer collapses on a bed in another room] No more drugs for that man.

[Castor-as-Archer stops Jamie's boyfriend from attempting to rape her and his him pinned against his car]
Castor Troy: OK, say you're sorry!
Karl: I'm sorry!
Castor Troy: I didn't hear it!
Karl: I'm sorry!
Castor Troy: Mean it!
Karl: I'm so sorry!
[Castor throws Karl onto the pavement]

[Castor has just rescued Jamie from an attempted rape]
Castor Troy: Dress up like Halloween, and ghouls will try and get in your pants.
Jamie Archer: Typical, Dad. Some guy tries to rape me and I'm to blame? [Castor hands Jamie a cigarette. She accepts and lights one]
Castor Troy: [sits down in a chair] This isn't you. You haven't been the same since Mike died. Hiding behind someone else's face, trying to hide the pain. While were talking, do you have protection?
Jamie Archer: Protection? You mean like a condom? [Castor pulls a butterfly knife from his pants pocket]
Castor Troy: Protection. Next time, let Karl take his pants down, slip this in his thigh, twist it, so the wound won't close. Go on. Get out of here. [Jamie leaves; Castor reclines in his chair] I am the king.

[Castor and Archer are divided by a glass wall and have their guns drawn]
Castor Troy: [sighs] I don't know what I hate wearing worse: your face or your body. I mean, I certainly do enjoy boning your wife, but let's face it, we both like it better the other way, yes? So why don't we just trade back?
Sean Archer: You can't give back what you've taken from me.
Castor Troy: Oh, well... plan B. Lets just kill each other.

[Castor sits down in his office to sulk. Seconds later, Lazarro comes in]
Victor Lazarro: Sean? Look, we're friends. So I'm going to tell you face-to-face. I don't give a damn if you are TIME's Man of the Year. After last night's bloodbath, I am terminating your war on terrorists. [Castor's eyes flash with rage]
Castor Troy: Is that because I'm getting all the kudos, and you're not?
Victor Lazarro: Yes, well. I don't know where you're getting your intelligence. It's not from a field agent. Obviously you know too much. Washington's starting to worry. Justice wants a hearing. They're concerned about the constitutionality of your gestapo tactics and frankly, so am I! [He clutches his chest, feeling palpitations. Castor takes notice of this]
Castor Troy: OK, Victor, I'll, uh, give the taxpayers a break. [puts his hand on Lazarro's shoulder] But I've got something I'd like to confess. I don't think you're going to like it. [puts his mouth on Lazarro's ear] I am Castor Troy... [He throws Lazarro to the floor and punches him in the chest hard enough to stop his heart completely. Castor collects himself and picks up his desk phone]
Castor Troy: Timmy? Kim?
Kim: Yes?
Castor Troy: Call paramedics. Victor Lazarro's had a heart attack.
Kim: I'll come right away.
Castor Troy: Thank you.

[Castor-as-Archer, and Archer-as-Castor, are in a Mexican standoff in the church]
Sean Archer: This is between us. Leave them out of it.
Castor Troy: No. You should have left them out of it. Your son was an accident. I wanted to kill you. But, you took it so personally. Why couldn't you just kill yourself or let it go?
Sean Archer: No father could.
Castor Troy: No brother could either.
Sasha Hassler: [coming in] Neither could a sister. Hey baby. [give a spare gun to Archer as Castor]
Castor Troy: [annoyed] Sasha, what the fuck are you doing here?
Sasha Hassler: Gee, Archer, I'm crashing the party. You okay, baby?
Sean Archer: Yea. I'm fine. Thanks.
Castor Troy: Sasha... baby, I'm Castor. He's Archer.
Sasha Hassler: [disbelieving Castor when he tells her his real identity and still believes him as the real Archer] And I'm bored. Put the fucking gun down.
Henchman #2: (coming behind Sasha) Why don't you put your guns down?

[Jamie points a gun at Castor-as-Archer and Archer-as-Castor]
Castor Troy: Ah, good girl, Jamie! Shoot him!
Sean Archer: Honey, don't listen to him, honey! He's not your father! Hear my voice! I'm your father!
Castor Troy: Use your eyes, Jamie! Shoot him!
Sean Archer: Don't shoot, don't shoot! Just, just...
Castor Troy: This scumbag... this scumbag shot your brother, Jamie! Kill him!
[Jamie shoots Archer in the shoulder]

Taglines[edit]

  • In order to catch him, he must become him.
  • To destroy your enemy, you must find him, face him, and then... become him.
  • It's like looking in a mirror - only not
  • Only one will survive

Cast[edit]

External Links[edit]

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