13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
Why? Because its directed by Sam Peckinpah and has a first-rate cast.
Of course Steve McQueen is magnetic in every scene he's in, Ali McGraw is pretty good as well, but the scary Al Lettiri almost steals the film from under their noses as Rudy Butler. You wouldn't want to mix it with this guy.
Its basically a simple heist movie with a few minor variations. Naturally as its Peckinpah there are some superb set pieces that you won't forget quickly.
The extras on this version are an audio commentary from DVD producer Nick Redman and authors Paul Seydor, Garner Simmons and David Weddle. Also a 'Virtual' audio commentary with stills of Steve McQueen, Ali MacGraw and Sam Peckinpah. These are all OK and in some places quite interesting, but the film is the main reason to get this DVD.
22 of 23 people found the following review helpful
One of the many things that gives 1972's The Getaway the edge over its now almost-forgotten remake is that, unlike Alec Baldwin, Steve McQueen doesn't act like a movie star - he is a movie star. From the days when cool was what you were, not what you wore or owned, the plot itself is nothing special: Steve McQueen's bank robber is sprung from jail to pull a job with wife Ali MacGraw and has to hightail it to Mexico with both the relentless double-crossing Al Lettieri and numerous Texas mobsters in hot pursuit. Like most chase thrillers, you've seen it before: it's what Peckinpah does with it that counts, and Peckinpah does plenty. Most of Peckinpah's usual trademarks can be found in the margins, from children's fascination with violence to the Hellfire and brimstone preacher whose radio sermon goes unheard, and the action scenes are superbly staged - especially the hotel shootout and the lovingly filmed shooting up of a police car - but just as importantly he keeps a clear focus on his characters. The film's emotional terrain is as harsh as the barren landscape the ensuing chase is set against, with the odds on McQueen and MacGraw's marriage making it just as touch-and-go as whether they will make it across the border in one piece, their road to possible marital redemption through ordeal mirrored with the fast-track to Hell that hostage couple Sally Struthers and Jack Dodson take chauffeuring Lettieri's perverse wounded animal on their trail.
It's probably Sam Peckinpah's last truly successful film before self-indulgence, laziness and too much booze and drugs took their toll on his work. True, it's a purely commercial piece that has none of the personal passion that drove The Wild Bunch or The Ballad of Cable Hogue, but it's put together with a level of genuine artistry that's way above the norm for the genre: the editing of the first twenty minutes alone, with its freeze-frames and non-linear structure, is remarkably adventurous and successful. Both perfectly representing the state of mind and frustration and disorientation of McQueen's character in a way that is both complex and yet entirely accessible and transforming what could have been bog-standard exposition into something much more memorable, it's strikingly effective. Far more entertaining than it has any right to be.
(On an incidental note, although Walter Hill claimed that little of his screenplay made it to the screen (the bleak ending of Jim Thompson's novel is replaced by a much sweeter and more optimistic one), it's interesting to note how much of the film he would rework in his own The Driver, from the destruction of a car in a key setpiece to the train sequence with a very (un)lucky bagman.)
Warners' 2.35:1 widescreen DVD is a good transfer, with a brief 'virtual commentary' by Peckinpah and the two stars drawn from radio interviews, a full-length commentary byPeckinpah biographers and the film's strikingly awful original theatrical trailer.
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
on 17 March 2008
Trevor Willsmer's superb review pretty much says it all. I found it as enjoyable as watching "The Getaway" itself. It is one film which i find myself coming back to, time and time again. (Like the overwhelming majority of Sam Peckinpah's work, come to think of it.)
"The Getaway" is another truly great Sam Peckinpah film, right from its brilliant opening title sequence. (Almost as good as that of "The Wild Bunch".) It's also a real treat because it features so much action, and Sam Peckinpah was surely one of the greatest directors of action sequences EVER to have worked in the film industry. The climactic shoot-out in Dub Taylor's hotel is utterly monumental, although its brutal savagery still shocks even to this day. And Steve McQueen delivers, for me, one of his very finest screen performances. Not exactly the greatest actor of his generation, but he has an absolutely unbelievable charisma in his role of Doc McCoy. He is totally credible in his depiction of a gun-toting master-criminal. Ali MacGraw also turns in a very good performance as his long-suffering wife, along with the remainder of the supporting cast.
I may already have seen this film many, many times, but i just know that i'm going to have to buy a copy to have and to hold.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on 3 July 2008
This 1972 movie directed by Sam Peckinpah and starring Steve McQueen as Doc McCoy and Ali MacGraw as his wife gets played on my dvd player regularly when i get boozed up. It is essentially the tale of a recently-sprung convict who must perform a bank robbery to pay back a character named Beynon who has pulled strings to spring him from prison. Everything that can go wrong does go wrong in this perfect robbery so we have this genre film that never slows up.
The film (penned by Walter Hill), however, is also about a marriage, its ups and downs, what can go wrong, how a cuckolded husband handles his wife's infidelity. .etc. Certainly the best thing in the movie is McQueen's usual understated performance. While he is not Marlon Brando, he doesn't have to be. A man of few words, he acts with both his face and body. Initially I thought Ali MacGraw (famous in the 1970's) was going to be only mildly pretty with a great mane of hair, but she does rise to the occasion and is quite good as the wife who makes the sacrifice of adultery to get her husband out of jail. The scenes between this couple work and sometimes sizzle; the fact that they were having an affair off-screen during the filming of "The Getaway" probably didn't hurt either. (MacGraw left her husband Robert Evans and married McQueen soon after the completion of the movie.)
As we would expect from the director of the over-rated "Straw Dogs" and the brilliant "The Wild Bunch", The Getaway has enough violence for the most bloodthirsty viewer. This is, after all, a film about a bank robbery. On the other hand, McCoy appears to be a decent man if only left alone, if you disregard his profession. He only kills when absolutely necessary. The music, cinematography and the editing are second to none.
The amazing extras on this version are an audio commentary from DVD producer Nick Redman and authors Paul Seydor, Garner Simmons and David Weddle. Also a 'Virtual' audio commentary with 1973 radio recordings of Steve McQueen, Ali MacGraw and Sam Peckinpah discussing the movie.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
I love this film, and I love Steve McQueen, especially when he is in all-action films like this. In some ways, there isn't a great deal of plot; con gets out of jail, gets the nod to rob a bank, everything goes awry, and they have to skedaddle as best they can with the loot, with all sorts of scary heavies on their trail.
I've read reviews of this film (perhaps on Amazon) that sort-of slag the film off, saying it doesn't have any real plot, or that it is too simplistic, or whatever. Perhaps these reviewers are more intellectual than me, but to me this is the perfect all-action, American thriller, complete with heist, love-relationship which doesn't get in the way of the main themes of the movie, shady gangsters looking for the loot, and action all the way. Isn't this what we want of Steve McQueen and American heist movies of the early 1970's? I know I do. In other words, if this movie is the equivalent of a massive cheeseburger and large fries and coke on ice, so what? I love Ingmar Bergman and those arthouse intellectual movies a whole lot, but the Americans (and sometimes the French and Japanese) have had a great knack throughout cinematic history of making great action movies, that do work on more levels if you want them to, that excite and thrill, and keep you entertained for 2 hours or so; this is one of those movies!
If you look at anything, anything certainly that is or has been successful, you can be critical of it, and perhaps also see that it works on many levels. Some books, films, pieces of music have this quality. Is 'The Getaway' critical of America in some way, is it attacking the premise of American capitalism, or the state of America in general? Or is it just a rollicking balls-to-the-wall all-action American movie? You decide, because I can't!
Then you have Al Lettieri, who plays the murderous, scary and downright nasty and psychotic Rudy Butler, who is after our heroes for the money, and no doubt to kill them. Lettieri was an Italian-American actor whose most popular role was that of Virgil Sollozzo 'The Turk' in the Godfather movie. In 'The Getaway' his character was equally as menacing, but more scary and unpredictable. And he was a fine actor, in many heist movies and thrillers in America in the early 70's.
I love this movie, it is a prime piece of Americana, and a wonderful and typical all-action movie of the early 70's. They really don't make 'em like this anymore, and they don't make actors/film stars like Steve McQueen anymore, more's the pity!
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 3 September 2012
This is a pretty straight forward crime film from Sam Peckinpah that is not his best but is gripping and violent. The couple on the run is nothing original it has been handled before in Gun Crazy and Bonnie and Clyde but Sam Peckinpah handles the material well from a script from Walter Hill (The Driver) this makes for solid entertainment. The film follows Carter "Doc" McCoy (McQueen) freshly released from jail to plan a heist of bank. The hesit goes well but when he is betrayed he goes on the with his wife and the cash in tow and pursued by vicious killer Rudy (Al Lettieri in another bad guy role alongside his in Godfather, Mcq and Mr Majestyk) as Doc and his wife attempt to get to an arranged hideout an El Paso hotel. But the plot never sags moving at a fast pace and exciting along the way including a thrilling showdown in the hotel boasting Peckinpah's signature slow motion shootouts. Steve McQueen as the calm and at time stoic crook while his future wife and co star Ali MacGraw gives a good one too. Even Ben Johnson even gets a small but slimy part as corrupt Warden. This is a gripping, violent and gritty seventies thrillers is must see for crime film enthusiasts.
on 9 December 2013
Doc McCoy is put in prison because his partner flew off without him after exchanging a prisoner for a lot of money.
Doc knows Jack Benyon, a rich man, is up to something big, so he tells his wife to tell him that he's for sale if Benyon can get him out of prison.
Benyon pulls some strings and Doc McCoy is released again. Unfortunately he has to cooperate with the same person that got him to prison.....
It's one of those films that never needed to be remade, but at the time, I'm guessing Basinger And Baldwin were the biggest couple in Hollywood, so why not do it again? The Marrying Man made a bundle, as did Love Affair. Oh hang on...
But the point of the film is to entertain, and it does, as its one of the best looking action movies of 1994, and for once it treats the audience as an adult and is suitable as an action movie or couples, which is really rare.
Baldwin is on the right side of tubby, but he over broods and it really gets to you after a while. Basinger does what. She normally does and smolders like a forties movie star.
The rest of the cast are just there for the pay check. Woods does his bad guy who is a little prolific role, and is just there to ignite the passion between the two leads characters, and Madsen features in a really gloomy depressing subplot involving Jennifer Tilly, and its pretty bizarre.
The action is good and its edited with a lot of respect, it just feels a little strange, despite the fact its enjoyable and fun, it feels too hasty and rushed.
A lot more could have been done.
But the one saving grace is at least they never remade it with Demi Moore and Ashton Kutcher.
4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on 1 October 2006
This is just a brilliant movie - action, suspense, sex, what more do you want? Alec and Kim are electric - shame they didn't make more movies together
on 8 August 2015
I know i'll probably get a Roasting for saying this But The Getaway Remake is in many ways superior to the First.The Stars are far more Charismatic and I would without a doubt rather spend My time with Basinger than McGraw.The Story Zips along Faster and the Action scenes are better.
on 27 December 2012
The Getaway is brilliant!The action scenes are amazing!(especially the final shooting battle).Steve Mqueen gives an outstanding perfomance.Steve Mqueen in the getaway shows the sort of dark side of his acting.The Getaway is a briliant film to watch.I highly recommend you buy it.