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Four marathon runners (one from England, one from the U.S., a Czech and an Australian Aborigine) prepare to run in the Olympic games. The film follows each one and shows what their motivations are for running in the games.
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Lesley Ann Warren,
Jack Ryan is a young Vietnam veteran with a criminal record, who gets fired from his job as a migrant laborer on a California produce farm run by the mean-spirited camp manager Bob Rodgers. Ryan then meets and teams up with the seductive Nancy Barker the secretary and mistress to the unscrupulous owner Ray Ritchie. When Ryan takes another job as a cleaner at a local motel owned by Sam Mirakian a local justice-of-the-peace, Nancy again approaches Ryan to help her rob Ritchie's safe in his house which allegedly has $50,000 of payroll money. Ryan reluctantly agrees to help with the heist, but becomes highly distrustful of Nancy, suspecting she may double-cross him to keep all the money for herself, and vice versa with her over him. Written by
Accurate portrait of a sexually abused young woman going mad
I'm giving this seven although the terrible music almost makes the picture unwatchable. What is interesting is Leigh Taylor-Young's portrayal of an under-age woman driven mad by being debauched, perverted and corrupted by a string of rich old men to whom she is pimped by her ageing moneybags employer. Dutch Leonard, author of the original novel, got his facts right here, and it gives the movie an underlying force that can't be denied. It's a surprise to find that the principal character is not Ryan O'Neal, who is wooden and sulky as the out-of-place "anglo" farm-worker in rural Monterey, but instead his then-wife and co-star Taylor-Young. Her character has gone over the edge as a result of being seduced by the local Senator at the instigation of her employer and bed-mate, the local landlord. Taylor-Young gets right into it, yipping and chortling as she turns over other cars and pumps bullets into mistaken interlopers. Her plan to rip off her employer for the fortune in his house-safe never comes off (at least not during the picture's action), and she escapes a murder charge, but as Van Heflin's character grimly points out: "Give it a month or ten years: she'll get hers". Worth watching just for Taylor-Young's performance, about one-third of which is in the nude. This film is a rare insight into female psychology, almost in spite of itself.
5 of 7 people found this review helpful.
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