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Silver Streak (1976)

On a long-distance train trip, a man finds romance but also finds himself in danger of being killed, or at least pushed off the train.

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Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 3 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
Hilly
...
...
Devereau
...
Sweet
...
Sheriff Chauncey
...
Mr. Whiney
...
Professor Schreiner & Johnson
Len Birman ...
Chief
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Plain Jane
...
Rita Babtree
...
Ralston
...
Reace
...
Delos V. Smith Jr. ...
Burt (as Delos V. Smith)
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Storyline

A somewhat daffy book editor on a rail trip from Los Angeles to Chicago thinks that he sees a murdered man thrown from the train. When he can find no one who will believe him, he starts doing some investigating of his own. But all that accomplishes is to get the killer after him. Written by Alfred Jingle

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

train | murder | sidekick | police | book | See All (116) »

Taglines:

It's the Most Hilarious Suspense Ride of Your Life! See more »


Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

3 December 1976 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

El expreso de Chicago  »

Filming Locations:

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Box Office

Budget:

$6,500,000 (estimated)
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Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Westrex Recording System)

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

First of two consecutive comedy thrillers written by Colin Higgins. The second released 2 years later was Foul Play (1978). Higgins conceived this film in mid -'74 when he was traveling by train from LA to Chicago. See more »

Goofs

When George reacts to seeing Grover hiding in the back of the police car for the first time, he violently turns the steering wheel and yet the handcuff keys in the dash do not move. See more »

Quotes

George Caldwell: [Grover has just told George they have to jump from the train] No! I've left this train twice already!
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User Reviews

 
Masculinity in 1976
24 May 2006 | by (Zurich, Switzerland) – See all my reviews

I saw this film in the cinema as a teenager when it came out. It was sold, I think, as a Hitchcock parody and I thought parodies were great. Gene Wilder was the star, that was one more reason for me to see it, as I had greatly enjoyed his performance in Mel Brooks' Young Frankenstein. Stuff like that attracted me much more than movies with Robert Redford or Charles Bronson who then were the big male heroes of the screen.

Now, a good 30 years later, I watched Silver Streak a second time. It is an unusual mixture of comedy, action thriller and disaster movie. Characters like the ones played by Wilder, Clayburgh or Pryor seem to have become extinct – in the movies, I mean. They just seem to be so ... ordinary and normal and also kind hearted. Everything about Silver Streak is so unpretentious, seeing it today that really was a kind of a revelation to me.

A lot of the movie deals with masculinity and the assertion of it. It all happens in a very relaxed manner. Nothing and nobody is taken too seriously, conquests are made without effort, failure is accepted with grace. In a strange way, this movie really represents a better, unattainable world. I doubt if someone like Gene Wilder wold make it as a movie star today – the public, it seems, needs the grimaces of Jim Carrey to be amused. Pity.

Come to think of it, in France they had a movie comedian who looked very similar to Wilder. His name was Pierre Richard and his fame reached its zenith at about the same time as Wilder's before fizzling out somewhere in the eighties, when the Stallones and Schwarzeneggers took over.

Silver Streak is an entertaining and – in a positive way - forgettable movie. It has a pleasant musical score by Henry Mancini, this great eclecticist of the 20th century. The older I'm getting the more I enjoy his music and respect his enormous body of work.


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