This movie was Dern's uncredited film debut. Dern was just six years old in this brief non-speaking walk on bit part. Dern plays the daughter of her real life mother Diane Ladd who appears in this movie as Maggie. See more »
When Gator is trying out the 1971 Ford Galaxy he was given by the Federal agents, you see him working a manual gear shift in the floor. Throughout the scene Gator upshifts and downshifts. However, when he arrives at his parents home, you see him place the car in park on the steering wheel, which is obviously an automatic transmission. See more »
Some people renting this expecting "Gator" style silliness are probably in for a surprise. This movie had a lot more of a "Deliverence" feeling than I expected, and felt authentic to the South of the 1970s. Ok, I wasn't there at the time, so it could be completely wrong. But it was convincing.
This is what Reynolds could have been--a middleweight serious Southern Action actor, like a cornpone Marlon Brando. There's just enough meat on the script to get the old mental wheels turning, and just enough action that it doesn't turn into one of those boring intellectual films about the Bad Ol' South. All in all, a good, interesting, tight movie.
Of course, it unfortunately led to "Gator" -- a bloated mess -- a few years later. Watching them back to back, it's pathetic to watch how Reynolds declined into a buffoon. As he showed in Boogie Nights, he's quite capable of playing serious dramatic roles. Too bad he didn't follow through on the promise of White Lightning, but I'm sure the $$$ were better for the garbage films he later made.
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