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Executive Action (1973)

6.7
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Ratings: 6.7/10 from 1,399 users  
Reviews: 60 user | 22 critic

Rogue intelligence agents, right-wing politicians, greedy capitalists, and free-lance assassins plot and carry out the JFK assassination in this speculative agitprop.

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(screenplay), (story), 1 more credit »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
James Farrington
...
Robert Foster
...
Harold Ferguson
Gilbert Green ...
Paulitz
...
Halliday
...
Gunman (Chris) - Team A
...
Tim
...
Operations Chief - Team A
Walter Brooke ...
Smythe
John Brascia ...
Rifleman - Team B
...
Gunman - Team A
Sidney Clute ...
Depository Clerk
Deanna Darrin ...
Stripper
...
Gunman - Team A
Lloyd Gough ...
Charlie McCadden
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Storyline

A dramatization about how the high level covert conspirators in the JFK assassination might have planned and plotted the assassination based on the data and facts of the case. It posits that a covert group of rogue intelligence agents, ultra-conservative politicians, unscrupulously greedy business interests, and free-lance assassins become increasingly alarmed at President Kennedy's policies, including his views on race relations, winding down the Vietnam War, and ending the oil depletion allowance. They decide to terminate him through an "executive action" utilizing three teams of well-trained snipers during JFK's visit to Dallas and place the blame on supposed CIA operative Lee Harvey Oswald as the lone assassin. Written by Gabe Taverney (duke1029@aol.com)

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Assassination conspiracy? The possibility is frightening. See more »


Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

7 November 1973 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Unternehmen Staatsgewalt  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Once the film was pulled from release in December 1973, it didn't show up again until the late 80s when it finally started surfacing on TV. See more »

Goofs

At about 29 minutes in, Burt Lancaster's character says that in May (Oswald) was distributing "Fair Play for Cuba" literature in Dallas. The historical record shows that Oswald distributed leaflets for this organization in New Orleans, not in Dallas. See more »

Quotes

Foster: [speaking to Farrington] Dallas has one of the highest murder rates in the country. In the last two years, the Secret Service has established 149 threats against Kennedy's life from Texas alone, yet they send him into hostile territory with no more protection than you and I would arrange for a favorite dog.
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Overlooked, but a solid companion piece to JFK
20 February 2002 | by (San Gabriel, Ca., USA) – See all my reviews

Released in November 1973, near the tenth anniversary of the Kennedy assassination, EXECUTIVE ACTION is often overlooked as a film because of Oliver Stone's extraordinarily controversial 1991 film JFK. It obviously doesn't have the high-budget gloss or the montage that Stone's film does, but what it does have is a hard-hitting inside look into the individuals who might have had a direct hand in plotting this hideous crime.

Burt Lancaster, Robert Ryan (in one of his final movies), and Will Geer are the conspirators, right-wing businessmen with an axe to grind. As in Stone's film, the motivations for the assassination are disgust with the way Kennedy handled Fidel Castro and the possibility that he would have stopped our involvement in Vietnam before it ever got to the ground troop stage. Based on Mark Lane's book "Rush To Judgement", scripted by former blacklisted writer Dalton Trumbo, and directed by David Miller (LONELY ARE THE BRAVE), EXECUTIVE ACTION is very somber and cold-blooded, but superbly constructed. It is amazing to think that three actors with ultra-liberal political credentials like Lancaster, Ryan, and Geer should be so icily convincing in their portrayals of fascists. The film makes very plausible the banality of evil. And like JFK, it also blows holes in the Warren Commission report big enough to drive a truck through and make apologists like Gerald Posner apoplectic.

Whether seen on its own terms or as a companion piece to the much better known JFK, EXECUTIVE ACTION is worth viewing--and, like Stone's film, asks us to consider the nightmarish chain of events that seem to have resulted directly or indirectly from what happened on that dark day in Dallas in 1963.


19 of 25 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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