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Bullitt (1968)

PG  |   |  Action, Crime, Mystery  |  17 October 1968 (USA)
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Ratings: 7.5/10 from 43,894 users  
Reviews: 304 user | 93 critic

An all guts, no glory San Francisco cop becomes determined to find the underworld kingpin that killed the witness in his protection.



(screenplay) (as Alan R. Trustman) , (screenplay), 1 more credit »
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Won 1 Oscar. Another 6 wins & 9 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Justin Tarr ...
Carl Reindel ...
Felice Orlandi ...
Albert Renick
Pete Ross (as Victor Tayback)
1st Aide
Pat Renella ...
Johnny Ross


High profile San Francisco Police Lieutenant Frank Bullitt is asked personally by ambitious Walter Chalmers, who is in town to hold a US Senate subcommittee hearing on organized crime, to guard Johnny Ross, a Chicago based mobster who is about to turn evidence against the organization at the hearing. Chalmers wants Ross' safety at all cost, or else Bullitt will pay the consequences. Bullitt and his team of Sergeant Delgetti and Detective Carl Stanton have Ross in protective custody for 48 hours over the weekend until Ross provides his testimony that upcoming Monday. Bullitt's immediate superior, Captain Samuel Bennet, gives Bullitt full authority to lead the case, no questions asked for any move Bullitt makes. When an incident occurs early during their watch, Bullitt is certain that Ross and/or Chalmers are not telling them the full story to protect Ross properly. Without telling Bennet or an incensed Chalmers, Bullitt clandestinely moves Ross while he tries to find out who is after ... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


"BULLITT comes to this theatre soon. That ought to shake up the place pretty good. Not many freaky cops like BULLITT around. You look at the Italian shoes and the turtleneck and you have to wonder. You listen to the official beefs about 'personal misconduct', 'disruptive influence', you figure he's got to be up for trade. But when some rare Chicago blood starts spilling in San Francisco, they give BULLITT the mop. They weren't exactly doing him a favour. But they've done a great big one for you" See more »


PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

17 October 1968 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Bullit  »

Box Office


$5,500,000 (estimated)


SEK 4,480,000 (Sweden)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?


The stunt motorcycle rider who wipes out during the chase is the same stunt rider who doubled for McQueen during the motorcycle wipe out scene in the field in the Great Escape. See more »


During the chase between the Mustang and the Charger, just after the Charger side-swipes the truck and hits the fence, the old man reaches back to roll down the driver-side quarter window. At this point, the sides and doors are rather damaged, yet the two cars do not make contact until a few seconds later. See more »


Bullitt: Look, Chalmers, let's understand each other... I don't like you.
See more »


Referenced in Where's Marlowe? (1998) See more »


Just Coffee
Music by Lalo Schifrin
Performed by
John Addino, David Brisbois, Conte Candoli, Don Ellis, Tony Terran (trumpet, flugelhorn); Milt Bernhart, Dick Noel, Lloyd Ulyate, Lew McCreary (trombone);Bud Shank (flute); Ted Nash, Plas Johnson, Justin Gordon (woodwinds); Ronnie Lang, Gene Cipriano, Bill Perkins, Jack Nimitez (sax); Ray Sherman (piano, organ); Paul Beaver (keyboards); Robert Bain, (guitar); Ray Brown (bass); Carol Kaye, Max Bennett (electric bass); Larry Bunker (drums)
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

Maximum Cool
1 November 2001 | by (Falls Church, Virginia) – See all my reviews

Steve McQueen's career peaked in 1968 with "Bullitt" and "The Thomas Crown Affair," both ideal vehicles for his cool persona. Although superior to its recent remake, "Crown" has not aged gracefully, while "Bullitt" has held up fairly well.

Cool though he may be, Frank Bullitt is a totally committed detective, perhaps even more so than Gene Hackman's Popeye Doyle or Clint Eastwood's Dirty Harry Callahan. Bullitt is a complete professional who never takes his eye off the objective, no matter how much interference he encounters from his superiors or from Robert Vaughan's scheming politician, Walter Chalmers. And Bullitt, unlike Doyle or Callahan, operates without the histrionics. No one-liners, no yelling and screaming tantrums from this officer. You may not like him very much, but you have to respect his dedication to duty and you'll quickly share his absolute contempt for Chalmers.

"Bullitt" is best remembered for its spectacular car chase in which McQueen reportedly did most of his own driving. But this is not primarily an action film. Aside from the chase and the final shootout at SFO, there's not a lot of violence. Most of the attention is on Bullitt's maneuvering to unravel the mystery and to keep Chalmers off his back.

Recommended if you like McQueen or policiers in general. The pace may be a little slow for people under 30 who are used to a more slam-bang, less cerebral approach to this sort of thing, but "Bullitt" is still worth your time. Just don't expect "Lethal Weapon."

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