6.4/10
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49 user 23 critic

The Hunting Party (1971)

A ruthless rancher, and his gang, use extremely long range rifles to kill the men who kidnapped his infidel wife.

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Writers:

(story) (as Gilbert Alexander), (story) | 3 more credits »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Frank Calder
...
Brandt Ruger
...
Melissa Ruger
...
Matthew Gunn
Ronald Howard ...
Watt Nelson
...
Hog Warren
...
Doc Harrison
William Watson ...
Jim Loring
...
Sam Bayard
Rayford Barnes ...
Crimp
...
Buford King
Richard Adams ...
Owney Clark
Dean Selmier ...
Collins
Sarah Atkinson ...
Redhead
...
Chinese Girl
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Storyline

The rich and ruthless rancher Brandt Ruger keeps his beautiful young wife Melissa like a part of his property, subdued to his will. But one day she's kidnapped by the famous outlaw Frank Calder - just to teach him reading, so he tells her. Calder doesn't know or care who's wife she is. He takes care of her well, and eventually Melissa falls in love with him. But Ruger feels humiliated. Full of hate, he sets out to kill him - and Melissa too, if necessary. Together with his friends and the newest technology in guns, which carry 800 yards, he initiates a battue on Calder and his gang. Written by Tom Zoerner <Tom.Zoerner@informatik.uni-erlangen.de>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

posse | rifle | outlaw | love | gun | See All (60) »

Taglines:

In the west revenge is a deadly game. See more »

Genres:

Drama | Western | Action

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

|

Language:

Release Date:

4 September 1971 (Japan)  »

Also Known As:

Cacería implacable  »

Filming Locations:


Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Westrex Recording System)

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

A rare foray into film for TV veteran director Don Medford. This film and the In the Heat of the Night (1967) sequel The Organization (1971) were Medford's only theatrical releases. See more »

Goofs

The first two shots from the bolt action rifles are too quick for a reload. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Melissa Ruger: Brandt. Stop! Brandt?
Brandt Ruger: Get dressed.
Melissa Ruger: Brandt, why do we...
Brandt Ruger: Get dressed!
See more »

Connections

Referenced in How Come Nobody's on Our Side? (1975) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Exciting and very dramatic western
21 October 2002 | by See all my reviews

This movie had me on the edge of my seat from start to finish. As wild westerns go, this ranks near the top. It's very well paced, and the acting is superb. Plot twists and the unfolding of well-developed characters sustain the movies' tension to the end.

Oliver Reed is stunning as Frank Calder, the tough leader of an outlaw gang who wants to learn to read. Thinking she is a schoolteacher who can teach him his letters, he kidnaps Melissa (Candice Bergman), the wife of the very wealthy Brant Rudger (Gene Hackman). Rudger, a cruel sadist and absolute dictator, talks his wealthy cronies into hunting down the outlaw gang and picking them off one by one with high-powered rifles. But he proposes it more as a game of revenge or sport than out of love or fear for his wife's safety.

Calder and Rudger are both brutal men, but Calder values human life and relationships while the Rudger cares only for indulging his passions at any cost. Though his friends start to sicken of the game and beg him to stop, Rudger won't be deterred from the game.

As the movie develops, Oliver Reed's scenes crackle with tension, energy, and a depth of sexuality that may surprise those who are more familiar with his roles as the heavy or antagonist. Gene Hackman's character brings a single-minded intensity to the movie that has rarely been matched on screen. Candice Bergman gives a feisty performance and carries off a difficult role very well. Her character is caught, both literally and figuratively in a war of emotions, in a terrifying conflict.

I agree with the prior reviewer who says this needs to be released on DVD! With so many bad movie DVD's out there, I'm surprised this one's potential has been overlooked for so long. Frankly, I would love to see it on the big screen.


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