Unlawful Entry


Unlawful Entry

Critics Consensus

Unlawful Entry may not depict a particularly novel or believable situation, but tense direction and a roundly committed cast make it easy to get caught up in the moment.



Total Count: 32


Audience Score

User Ratings: 9,665
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Unlawful Entry Photos

Movie Info

After their Los Angeles suburban house is burglarized, Karen and Michael Carr (Madeleine Stowe and Kurt Russell), are assisted by policeman Pete Davis (Ray Liotta). At first, Davis seems helpful and polite, even helping the Carrs when he is off duty. Soon, it becomes apparent that the policeman has developed an obsession for Karen, and he begins terrorizing the couple, with the intent of killing Michael and running away with Karen. Though the plot is fairly predictable, Unlawful Entry is highlighted by fine performances by all three lead actors.

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Kurt Russell
as Michael Carr
Ray Liotta
as Off. Pete Davis
Roger E. Mosley
as Off. Roy Cole
Ken Lerner
as Roger Graham
Carmen Argenziano
as Jerome Lurie
Madeleine Stowe
as Karen Carr
Andy Romano
as Capt. Hayes
Sonny Carl Davis
as Neighbor Jack
Harry Northrup
as Sgt. McMurtry
Sherri Rose
as Girl in Jeep
Alicia Ramirez
as Taco-Stand Worker
Sherrie Rose
as Girl in Jeep
Myim Rose
as Layla
T.J. McInturff
as Layla's Kid
Tony Longo
as Big Anglo
Oscar Abadia
as Radio Announcer
Lynn Eastman
as Candace Lurie
David Taylor Moran
as Party Guest
Leslie James
as Party Guest
Matthew Levy
as Kid in Classroom
Dorian Daneau
as Kid in Classroom
Marisa Durboraw
as Kid in Classroom
Royce Minor
as Kid in Classroom
Judy Hoy
as Waitress
Dick Miller
as Impound Clerk
Bob Minor
as Detective Murray
Curt Boulware
as Tall Detective
Craig Mizutari
as Narcotics Detective
Paul Bollen
as Plainclothes Cop
Ed DeFusco
as Plainclothes Cop
Djimon Hounsou
as Prisoner on Beach
Jeffrey Beale
as Prisoner on Beach
Richard Narita
as Detective Nobu
Eduardo Migre
as Transfer Guard
Nora Heflin
as Woman Lawyer
Chuck Bennett
as Judge Darabont
Robert Steinberg
as Deputy District Attorney
Victor Brandt
as Attorney Gershon
Jim Selzer
as Prison Guard
Bill Rogers
as Prison Guard
Robert Costanzo
as Bail Bondsman
Skip Carwell
as Prisoner on Phone
Bill E. Rogers
as Prison Guard
Ed Beechner
as Motorcycle Cop
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News & Interviews for Unlawful Entry

Critic Reviews for Unlawful Entry

All Critics (32) | Top Critics (9)

  • Although it exists primarily to send an audience into a bloodthirsty frenzy and has major credibility problems in the bargain, Unlawful Entry is still a very effective victimization thriller.

    Apr 9, 2008

    Todd McCarthy

    Top Critic
  • Neither Lewis Colick's script nor Jonathan Kaplan's direction is quite as streamlined as it could be, but you certainly get a run for your money.

    Apr 9, 2008 | Full Review…
  • Solid performances lend weight to the flakier elements, with Liotta turning crazed excess into something wild.

    Jun 24, 2006 | Full Review…
    Time Out
    Top Critic
  • More gripping than it is convincing.

    May 20, 2003 | Rating: 3/5
  • The plot is as tediously redundant as director Jonathan Kaplan's approach is carefully workmanlike.

    Jan 1, 2000 | Full Review…
  • Entry is acted more intelligently than is usual in this type of cookie-cutter shocker.

    Jan 1, 2000 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for Unlawful Entry

  • Nov 03, 2012
    Dated in some ways (it has only become more formulaic with the passage of time), but still a serviceable thriller, Unlawful Entry is a paranoid movie that justifies paranoia. Russell is convincing as the 'every man' having to deal with the always enjoyable and underrated Ray Liotta, as a crazed and envious cop. It is their interactions that really make the film watchable, and helps sell the more absurd elements of the narrative. The direction also does a good job of keeping the film tensely paced, with scene construction that builds up the suspense well. The script is adequate from the standpoint that, while we know where the script is headed, it manages to keep enough surprises in store that we stay engaged. At the same time, the overall set-up strains believably--how can Madeleine Stowe's character possibly be so dumb and naive? How could others in the department not notice the unhinged and impulsive Officer Davis (Liotta)? There are simply too many holes and logical leaps to make Unlawful Entry anything more than a B level-thriller. But taken on those terms, it's enjoyable enough, successfully playing on some of our worst fears (wrongful arrest, the system out to get us), and doing so in a generally effective way. 3/5 Stars
    Jeffrey M Super Reviewer
  • Sep 24, 2012
    Unlawful Entry is a psychological thriller with some chilling and frightening twists. After responding to a break-in at a suburban couple's home, an LAPD officer becomes obsessed with the wife and tries to make her his. The film stars Kurt Russell, Ray Liotta, and Madeleine Stowe; who all deliver good performances. And, the story is fairly well written, and does a good job at building suspense and terror. But there are parts of the film that are undeveloped, and the film style is a bit dated. Though Unlawful Entry is pretty much a by-the-numbers thriller, it's still compelling and exciting.
    Dann M Super Reviewer
  • Aug 05, 2007
    It has all the elements of a perfect thriller.A good storyline,tension,thrills and suspense
    John M Super Reviewer
  • May 29, 2007
    Ray Liotta does his "I'm intense and creepy" schtick as a cop who stalks a bland middle class couple in an uninteresting and unconvincing formulaic Hollywood thriller. "Move along folks, there's nothing to see here..."
    xGary X Super Reviewer

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