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Savages (1974)

TV Movie  |   |  Thriller  |  11 September 1974 (USA)
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Ratings: 7.1/10 from 147 users  
Reviews: 11 user | 5 critic

Ben Campbell, a 22 year old gas station attendant in a small desert town, is looking to make some extra money. He is surprised when Madec, a wealthy lawyer, asks him to be his guide in a ... See full summary »



(teleplay), (novel)
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Cast overview:
Horton Madec
Ben Campbell
George Whiting (as Noah Beery)
Sheriff Bert Hamilton
Randy Boone ...
Deputy Dickie Haycroft
Deputy Les Hanford
James Chandler ...
The Doctor (as Jim Chandler)


Ben Campbell, a 22 year old gas station attendant in a small desert town, is looking to make some extra money. He is surprised when Madec, a wealthy lawyer, asks him to be his guide in a hunting trip in the desert. When Madec accidentally shoots a prospector, he is fearful of what it will do his reputation, and decides to eliminate the only witness, Ben, who is forced to go on the run. In addition to being hunted by Madec, Ben must also contend with the harsh desert elements. But if he does make it back to town alive, will anyone believe his story? Written by Ronos

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

hunting | murder | based on novel | See All (3) »


He's found the perfect prey...a young defenseless human







Release Date:

11 September 1974 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Chasse tragique  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


This story was remade into 'Beyond the Reach (2014)' Starring Michael Douglas and Jeremy Irvine. See more »


Horton Maddock: [after trying to shoot Ben] Advantage here!
Ben Campbell: Like hell, Madec!
See more »


Remade as Beyond the Reach (2014) See more »

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User Reviews

Matlock is a Murderer!
20 January 2011 | by (the Draconian Swamp of Unholy Souls) – See all my reviews

Good old Andy Griffith is mostly known and legendary for his leading roles in the long-running TV hits "The Andy Griffith Show" and, of course, Grampa Simpson's favorite "Matlock". I have to be very honest and admit I've never seen a single episode of these two series, nor anything else he ever did. Having only seen this ABC movie of the week "Savages", I can only say it's regrettable that this man didn't portray any more villainous characters throughout his career instead of making ten thousand episodes of the same damn show! Griffith depicts one of the most loathsome types of bad guys in this film: an obnoxious, rich, sleazy and egocentric elderly guy who thinks he's more powerful than God himself. The performance is very convincing, and solely based on his portrayal of Horton Madec, I think Griffith should have played more roles like it. Horton Madec headed out to the desert to hunt for mountain ram trophies, but the trip doesn't really goes as planned. When Madec (accidentally?) kills a local hermit, his youthful guide Ben wants to do the right thing and report it. The old man fears a scandal and offers Ben a bribe. When he refuses, Madec forces Ben to strip off his clothes and wander through the hot desert without food or water. The young man is strong, but Madec chases him around in his jeep and rifles. "Savages" is a bit of a misleading title. It's in plural even though there's only one baddie and he isn't even a savage but more like a sophisticated and eloquent villain. If the plot sounds vaguely familiar, it's because you have probably seen it numerous times before already. The "hunting humans" storyline is one of the most popular themes in the horror/action business and exists since the early 1930's, with the timeless classic "The Most Dangerous Game". Since then the same plot has been reworked into versions, each with a different setting or specific type of characters, for example a prison in "Blood Camp Thatcher. This plot always works and practically guarantees a suspenseful movie. "Savages" simply replaces the tropical island setting with a seemingly endless and baking desert, but it's enough. This is a TV-production, so don't expect any extreme violence, but director Lee Katzin ("Whatever Happened to Aunt Alice?") provides enough tense atmosphere and beautiful imagery.

4 of 6 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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