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Duel (1971)

TV Movie  -   -  Action | Mystery | Thriller  -  13 November 1971 (USA)
7.7
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Ratings: 7.7/10 from 36,850 users  
Reviews: 279 user | 110 critic

A business commuter is pursued and terrorized by a malevolent driver of a massive tractor-trailer.

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(screenplay), (story)
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Title: Duel (TV Movie 1971)

Duel (TV Movie 1971) on IMDb 7.7/10

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Nominated for 1 Golden Globe. Another 3 wins & 3 nominations. See more awards »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
...
Mrs. Mann
Eddie Firestone ...
Cafe Owner
Lou Frizzell ...
Bus Driver
Gene Dynarski ...
Man in Cafe
Lucille Benson ...
Lady at Snakerama
Tim Herbert ...
Gas Station Attendant
Charles Seel ...
Old Man
Shirley O'Hara ...
Waitress
Alexander Lockwood ...
Old Man in Car
Amy Douglass ...
Old Woman in Car
Dick Whittington ...
Radio Interviewer (voice)
Carey Loftin ...
The Truck Driver (as Cary Loftin)
Dale Van Sickel ...
Car Driver (as Dale VanSickle)
Edit

Storyline

While traveling through the desert for an appointment with a client, the businessman David Mann from California passes a slow and old tanker truck. The psychotic truck driver feels offended and chases David along the empty highway trying to kill him. Written by Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

The most bizarre murder weapon ever used! See more »


Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

13 November 1971 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Duel  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Budget:

$450,000 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (original)

Sound Mix:

(Westrex Recording System)|

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

When the truck enters the gate during the climax of the film, it actually hits the camera: in the last frame or so, you can see distortion and small pieces of the camera at the bottom right of the screen. Also, the shot is a flipped negative. See more »

Goofs

As David flips through different radio stations, a sports broadcast mentions Texas beating the Yankees. The Texas Rangers began play in 1972. However, a few minutes later he is listening to a call-in show discussing the Census questionnaire. The Census was taken in 1970. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
[radio playing, driving down the road, approaches the truck]
[David coughs, coughs again]
David Mann: Talk about pollution.
See more »

Crazy Credits

A scene plays out over the credits where David Mann sits on the edge of the cliff throwing stones. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Monster Man (2003) See more »

Soundtracks

Brush Those Tears from Your Eyes
Written by Al Trace (as Clem Watts), Oakley Haldeman and James Lee
Published by MCA Music (ASCAP)
See more »

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User Reviews

The ultimate car chase movie...

Leave it to prosemaster extraordinaire, Richard Matheson (a favorite of mine and the man Stephen King acknowledges as being his biggest influence), to come up a premise so simple yet so believable and terrifying that the viewer will never look at an eighteen-wheeler the same way ever again...and leave it to cinematic wunderkind, Stephen Spielburg, to do right by Matheson's script and win acclaim in the bargain.

Though some may argue that "Bullit", "Vanishing Point", or maybe even the original "Gone in 60 Seconds" could be called the ultimate car chase movie, "Duel" deserves this designation better because it does something none of the above films can claim. The story literally starts on the road and ends on the road. No location in the entire film is ever out of sight of the highway and, in spite of the brief conversation with the wife, virtually nothing else happens outside the highway. For David Mann (played adequately enough by Dennis Weaver) and the monster truck he's trying to get away from, the road and everything alongside it is their entire universe. Nothing else of importance exists outside of it.

Though it's never mentioned in the film, this would seem to take place on the California highways. When I went out there about eight years ago, I went down roads that seemed to be not too dissimiliar to the ones shown here. They seemed to stretch on forever, no vestiges of civilization in sight for miles. Spielburg uses this setting to great advantage. Being in your car in a crowded city intersection is one thing, but on those highways with nothing but your car and a homicidal maniac in a diesel for miles? The isolation factor that cars naturally produce jumps up a thousand percent. The radiator hose problem made me think of many other times that I had similar troubles with cars I've had. Of course, I never had someone trying to kill me at the time, but...

Anyone looking for drama, character development, or all the other elements that pseudo-critics point out as the mark of cinematic excellence are liable to be disappointed by "Duel". It's what King described in "Danse Macabre" as a Tale of the Hook. It's only purpose is to scare the hell out of you. Damn if it doesn't work. THAT'S the mark of a classic.


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Remake? hackraytex
The bus and the Truck Driver's motive MarvinCandle
One of the greatest low budget thrillers ever made. Grayseph
Duel knock-off movie? nospam92104
Why keep going? ecs67-1
What exactly is so good about this film? DawsonRoseDawson
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