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Wealthy businessman Harry Mitchell falls prey to ruthless blackmailers after having an illicit affair with a young model. Single-handedly, he masterminds a plan to beat the extortionists at their game, eventually facing the foremost crook in a deadly confrontation.
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Top Customer Reviews
A Cannon opening starts it(that is enough to send shivers up the spine of any movie fan!!).
It is quickly established that the lead character Harry Mitchell is having an affair with a younger woman, concisely that he is a self made man, and that he is been blackmailed and decides to take action against his tormentors.
Lit by Jost Vacano and having a lurid and sordid set-up, and environment of Los Angeles.
Roy Schieder was always an underrated actor and made this as his fame was fading in the eighties-he gives a terrific performance as a man desperately salvaging his marriage and attempting to turn tables on his blackmailers.
Ann Margaret as his betrayed wife-holds her own.
The movie really belongs to John Glover-as a sleazy pornographer/murderer-(the second time he and Schieder worked together as well, with The Last Embrace, being the 1st).
Clarence Williams 111 is superb as Bobby Shy-a truly vile human being.
Frankenheimer brings all theses diverse elements together to make a realistic (within the realms of movies), sleazy revenge thriller-Schieder is superb as a man out of his element, whom is willing to fight back-on his terms.
Frankenheimer restores faith in his abilities after the abberation of "The Holcroft Covenant", he was a truly talented director, whom went adrift in the 1970's. This at least restored him partially.
Pick it up cheap-and be surprised
Successful business entrepreneur Harry Mitchell (Scheider) finds himself the victim of blackmail by three pornographers who have video evidence of his extramarital affair. With his wife about to embark on a new stage of her political career, the last thing Harry needs is a scandal, but when things take a turn for the worse Harry decides to use unorthodox methods to deal with the blackmailers.
A nifty neo-noir this, certainly deserving of being better known in neo-noir circles. The presence of Leonard at the writing table ensures that the story doesn't drift too far away from his own source material, though location is moved to L.A. as opposed to the Detroit of the novel. Thematic thrust centres around Mitchell being caught for his indiscretions and what the consequences of his actions means for all around him, quite often with devastating results.
Mitchell has to move about a seedy world of pornography, of cheap peekaboo bars, strip joints and snuff movies, he has to get to the level of his blackmailers so as to enact his plans with conviction. The three weasels played by Glover, Williams and Trebor are in turn slimy, menacing and a twitchy neurotic, an off-beat trio suitably framed by Frankenheimer's sleazy and cold world.
It may not be prime Frankenheimer but the director knows his noir onions, both in performances garnered from his strong cast and via his visual ticks.Read more ›
No extras, but it does have a decent 1.85:1 widescreen transfer.
This is a pretty good film, but I believe sold short by those that had a vested interest in promoting to its' best - a film for those who like a good thriller with a twist, as well those who want to see Elmore Leonard's book mirrored reasonably closely into the moving image.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
It's not a new film but the acting is good and there are enough twists in the plot to keep things interesting. Good for an evening in!Published 12 months ago by penny
Porn I can watch in front of the wife
Read the book you lazy **** oh you have well then enjoy
we are elmore leonard fans but this film is not as good as the book. The humour and wit removed..Published 19 months ago by MARTIN PARNELL