Robert Culp plays Bracken, a rich industrialist whose life seems perfect until his wife, Ellen, and their children are kidnapped by terrorists. After failed attempts by the police to ...
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Andrew V. McLaglen
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Robert Culp plays Bracken, a rich industrialist whose life seems perfect until his wife, Ellen, and their children are kidnapped by terrorists. After failed attempts by the police to capture the terrorists, Ellen's ex husband enters the fray and plans his own rescue attempt. James Coburn plays McCabe, Ellen's ex-husband who hires a crew of professional hang gliders to help him rescue her and the kids from the terrorists' mountain top lair. Written by
Patrick Knightly <firstname.lastname@example.org>
This movie's Spanish 'El asalto de los hombres pájaro' title translates literally into English as 'The Assault of the Birdmen'. See more »
During the supposed night-time rescue operation when the rescuers hang-glided in for the rescue, you can clearly see the shadows of the hang gliders on the rocks below them. So, clearly these scenes were shot in the daytime with a dark filter used to make it look like nighttime. See more »
"Skyriders" is a typical action film from the 70's that opened and closed within two weeks and your local theater and drive-in. It contains a few name stars (James Colburn, Robert Culp) but let's face it the action is supposed to be the star. On that score the film is not bad. The problem is it takes much too long to get to the action.
Colburn stars as a pilot whose ex-wife and child (along with another child fathered by Culp) are kidnapped by mercenaries for ransom. While Culp works on raising the money and cooperating with authorities, Coburn hires a band of expert gliders to aid in a rescue. All of this could have been told in a clean quick manner but it takes forever to get to the rescue. We even have a silly montage of the skydivers training Colburn. Not necessary. We want the action! Contrary to the first comment the skyrider scenes are not too dark even though the desired effect is for it to night time. Actually I think it was shot during the day and a dark filter superimposed on the film to make it look like night. If you look closely at the rocks you can see the shadows of the gliders. I never saw such pronounced shadows at night.
The gliding scenes are well done and thrilling up to a point. My biggest problem is that the escape plan seems all too easy seeing where the kidnappers are located. Of course it's not all done without a hitch but there are no real twists to keep things exciting. The last part of the film becomes a standard shoot em up film that you have scene hundreds of times before.
The film is mediocre at best. The good talent is pretty much wasted in an action film with not enough action or a smart script.
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