MOVIEmeter
SEE RANK
Down 1,002 this week

The Sugarland Express (1974)

 -  Adventure | Comedy | Crime  -  5 April 1974 (USA)
6.8
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 6.8/10 from 9,265 users  
Reviews: 50 user | 46 critic

A woman attempts to reunite her family by helping her husband escape prison and together kidnapping their son. But things don't go as planned when they are forced to take a police hostage on the road.

Director:

Writers:

(screenplay), (screenplay), 3 more credits »
0Check in
0Share...

On Disc

at Amazon

User Lists

Related lists from IMDb users

a list of 26 titles
created 05 Sep 2011
 
a list of 24 titles
created 18 Dec 2012
 
a list of 28 titles
created 19 Feb 2013
 
a list of 23 titles
created 2 months ago
 
a list of 30 titles
created 1 month ago
 

Related Items

Connect with IMDb


Share this Rating

Title: The Sugarland Express (1974)

The Sugarland Express (1974) on IMDb 6.8/10

Want to share IMDb's rating on your own site? Use the HTML below.

Take The Quiz!

Test your knowledge of The Sugarland Express.

User Polls

1 win & 2 nominations. See more awards »
Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

1941 (1979)
Action | Comedy | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.9/10 X  

Hysterical Californians prepare for a Japanese invasion in the days after Pearl Harbor.

Director: Steven Spielberg
Stars: John Belushi, Dan Aykroyd, Treat Williams
Always (1989)
Drama | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

A romantic adventure about a legendary pilot's passion for dare-devil firefighting and his girl.

Director: Steven Spielberg
Stars: Richard Dreyfuss, Holly Hunter, Brad Johnson
Duel (TV Movie 1971)
Action | Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

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

Director: Steven Spielberg
Stars: Dennis Weaver, Jacqueline Scott, Eddie Firestone
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

The life and trials of a young African American woman.

Director: Steven Spielberg
Stars: Danny Glover, Whoopi Goldberg, Oprah Winfrey
Drama | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

After an encounter with U.F.O.s, a line worker feels undeniably drawn to an isolated area in the wilderness where something spectacular is about to happen.

Director: Steven Spielberg
Stars: Richard Dreyfuss, François Truffaut, Teri Garr
Amistad (1997)
Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

About a 1839 mutiny aboard a slave ship that is traveling towards the northeastern coast of America. Much of the story involves a court-room drama about the free man who led the revolt.

Director: Steven Spielberg
Stars: Djimon Hounsou, Matthew McConaughey, Anthony Hopkins
Drama | History | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

A young English boy struggles to survive under Japanese occupation during World War II.

Director: Steven Spielberg
Stars: Christian Bale, John Malkovich, Miranda Richardson
Horror | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

Four horror/sci-fi segments directed by four famous directors which are their own versions of classic stories from Rod Serling's landmark television series.

Directors: Joe Dante, John Landis, and 2 more credits »
Stars: Dan Aykroyd, Albert Brooks, Vic Morrow
Firelight (1964)
Sci-Fi | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

Menacing flying saucers attack the citizens of a town.

Director: Steven Spielberg
Stars: Robert Robyn, Beth Weber, Lucky Lohr
Savage (TV Movie 1973)
Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

A TV reporter investigates compromising photographs of a nominee to the Supreme Court.

Director: Steven Spielberg
Stars: Martin Landau, Barbara Bain, Will Geer
Something Evil (TV Movie 1972)
Horror
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.7/10 X  

A young couple moves into a farmhouse in rural Pennsylvania. What they don't know is that there is an unseen presence in the house, and that it wants to take possession of the wife.

Director: Steven Spielberg
Stars: Darren McGavin, Sandy Dennis, Ralph Bellamy
Amblin' (1968)
Short
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

They were both wanderers but to be more specific...Hippies.

Director: Steven Spielberg
Stars: Richard Levin, Pamela McMyler, Henry Axelrod
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
Captain Tanner
Michael Sacks ...
Slide
...
...
Mashburn
...
Jessup
Louise Latham ...
Mrs. Looby
Harrison Zanuck ...
Baby Langston
A.L. Camp ...
Mr. Nocker
Jessie Lee Fulton ...
Mrs. Nocker
Dean Smith ...
Russ Berry
Ted Grossman ...
Dietz
Bill Thurman ...
Hunter
Kenneth Hudgins ...
Standby #1
Buster Daniels ...
Drunk (as Buster Danials)
Edit

Storyline

Lou-Jean, a blonde woman, tells her husband, who is imprisoned, to escape. They plan to kidnap their own child, who was placed with foster parents. The escape is partly successful, they take a hostage, who is a policeman and are pursued through to Texas... Written by Kornel Osvart <kornelo@alphanet.hu>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

The true story of a girl who took on all of Texas...and almost won. See more »


Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

5 April 1974 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Carte Blanche  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Budget:

$3,000,000 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Westrex Recording System)

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

The hijacked Texas Department of Public Safety patrol car featured in the film is a 1973 Dodge Polara, which Steven Spielberg bought after filming himself, bullet holes and all. See more »

Goofs

While the Border Patrol's purpose is indeed to protect the United States against illegal entry and not vice-versa, they are still a law enforcement agency that can be called upon to assist other state or federal agencies (as depicted in the film) to prevent wanted felons fleeing the United States jurisdiction during a pursuit. This has happened numerous times in reality and as such they are completely justified in firing at Clovis's car during their attempted escape. See more »

Quotes

Clovis Poplin: We're in real trouble.
Clovis Poplin: Say, I didn't mean what I said.
Maxwell Slide: What was that?
Clovis Poplin: When I called you a son of a bitch, I didn't mean it
Maxwell Slide: And you ain't no mental subject neither.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Back to the Future Part III (1990) See more »

Soundtracks

I've Been Working on the Railroad
(uncredited)
Traditional
Played by a band when the car enters Rodrigues, Texas
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
Early Spielberg is just as fun as any Spielberg
8 August 2011 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

There's something so incredibly fascinating about watching the humble beginnings of a director as renowned as Stephen Spielberg. The Sugarland Express is one of his earliest films and it is not of the calibre of films like Jaws, Close Encounters of the Third Kind, and the Indiana Jones franchise, but it still remarkably entertaining. It tells the story of two lovers who go on a mad run from the law in order to kidnap their son from his foster parents. Lou-Jean, played by Goldie Hawn, breaks her husband, Clovis, out of jail in order to do so and this sparks mad paranoia in the two. The run from the law doesn't occur until the two kidnap a policeman and his vehicle, forcing him to drive them to Sugarland, Texas in order to find their baby boy. This is a wild, exciting, often hilarious film, and to top it all off it's based on a true story.

I think what defines this film more than anything is the distinct new Spielberg smell. It has all of the things we recognize from the bigger Spielberg films, just on a much smaller scale. The dialogue flows so naturally and fits right in with the action and camera work of the film. There are lots of familiar camera techniques in the film, especially the fluid camera movement that goes on within the confines of the police vehicle, where a lot of the film takes place. Nothing is as grand and widespread as Spielberg's classics, but anyone who respects the genius can respect this film for what it is because, like it or not, this is where it all began.

But not only is The Sugarland Express a fascinating look into how Spielberg got his start, it is also just an incredibly fun film. Goldie Hawn plays the border line psychopath mother perfectly. She wants nothing more than to see her baby boy again, and she won't let anything stop her. The film hits both ends of the spectrum very nicely. A lot of it is very comedic, ranging from cleverly hilarious to downright goofy at times. Yet there are also moments of sincere dramatic tension. Through all of the offbeat wackiness, the film never forgets the situation it is dealing with. Despite everything, it is still two convicts running from the law, a subject that the characters must handle with care. And the film brings this to light very well, as it is very gripping at moments, and almost touching at others.

The Sugarland Express isn't much more than a very exciting adventure story with some enticing moments of drama thrown in, but you have to love it for that. It doesn't try to be much more and it pulls off everything it wants to deliver with a lot of talented finesse and grace. This is not a film to miss. It's only mistake was coming right before Jaws, a masterpiece that overshadowed it greatly, hence why we know that name, but few of us have heard of the pleasant little gem that is The Sugarland Express.


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

Message Boards

Recent Posts
travolta is right about the ending ash_skywalker10
How true is this movie? pajam
is this a good spielberg movie? roundface
Underrated mcm10789
1980 to 1990 Cadillac Fleetwood on back cover of dvd version madhouse_495
DVD?! filmmaker812
Discuss The Sugarland Express (1974) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?