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It's pretty obvious that this is a revenge film and it's one of the best of the genre. Not quite as gory as the box would lead you to believe, it's still got nasty wounds. The two main actors have been in about a thousand movies each, so you will be happy to see a couple of familiar faces. Great morbid country music is well placed in the film. It's not the best story ever written, but I could sympathize with most of the characters.
Ernest Borgnine shines in this movie, gracefully acts the part of a simple but sincere back country grandfather with values acquired over a life time of experience. This movie should convince anyone that he is underrated as an actor. Michael J. Pollard, also underrated, portrays a degenerate criminal type very convincingly. The two play roles which bring out the character of the other, and neither actor overplays his part. A movie which should appeal to fans of Charles Bronson's Death Wish movies. Wish it would appear on tv once in awhile.
After robbing a local bank and killing an innocent couple three dangerous thugs with Michael J.Pollard as the leading psychopath seek a hiding place at a secluded farm.Unfortunately for them a devoted,hard working farmer played by Ernest Borgnine defies the criminals holding them at gunpoint and leading to a tense and emotionally charged stand-off..."Venegance is Mine" is another great Canadian rural revenge thriller in the tradition of "Death Weekend","Rituals","Sudden Fury","Trapped","Shoot","The Clown Murders" and "Deadly Harvest".The scenes of violence are uncompromising,the cast is solid and the ominous country score provides eerie mood.Such outbursts of violence as Lucy's assault or the two innocent bystanders getting gunned down by the hoodlums have a raw and sudden brutality.The film is obviously influenced by "Straw Dogs",but it works on its own.8 out of 10.
The movie moves through its plot in subtle ways- no big explosions or car
chases, not even any prolonged suspense- you know exactly what is going to
happen as it happens, yet I found myself glued to this
The atmosphere was really gritty and things... just happen. Almost like being a cab rolling through unfamiliar territory with a cabbie who is speaking about unpleasent things, the movie takes you on and on but you just can't get off.
Ernest plays a charactor that is rare in a sincere form- an American with backbone combined with wisdom willing to take action.
Unfortunately, his daughter is (forboding of what is coming down the pipeline?) jelly spined and totally with out active morals. She is content to sit back and judge everyone, breakdown emotionally, and then ignore the situation completely by running off with yet another man/support system. She couldn't be blamed, that is until her father sought to teach her an important life lesson, and... she still didn't get it.
Yes, Ernest's charactor goes too far and his daughter practices inconclusive thinking. So the charactors are way too extreme- it turns into a situation that just wouldn't happen with real people. This can be explained that the movie was made in the seventies, when a lot of movies tried to "preach at us" (as opposed to today's movies which now "show us a lesson"). They seem to try to make Ernest's charactor into some kind of bizarre villian, when to me he comes off as an okay guy living in a bizarre world thrown into a situation he never made in the first place.
Everyone says the acting is poor- I don't think so, maybe just a little over played, but I think it is fine for this genre.
I give this movie a 10 because I have watched 15 movies this week that have come out recently and this one is better than all of them, and:
You want to see how everything comes out.
No where in the movie does someone say "your other left".
It doesn't try to explain much, just lays it out there.
first i'd like to say that this movie is flawless, only 80 minutes on the version i saw, and anyone who posts trivia on this movie should think hard first. The movie occurs in real time= 1 day, from time to go to church in the morning until its over. Which is before dark. The original Canadian title is Sunday IN THE COUNTRY, and if you have ever lived in the country in the summertime there is a good chance you might eat dinner at 4 pm. Saying that, there is a good chance it may not get dark until as late as 9pm. So whatever previous self proclaimed genius's in here got confused about it being light out after dark....(threw window's or the like) oughta hang it up ! There was more than enough time for this one to play out / without the sun ever needing to fall. DO THE MATH....Now that iv'e got that out of the way....the American title is vengeance is mine, so besides this being what the movie is about i'll spare you the time telling you anything about the movie or it's characters. I'll just tell you this, the daughter is a bleeding heart liberal, the grandfather is an oldfashioned conservative a spooky early 70's movie at the best level with all the shadows....lol! that is under the trees and in a farm house and barn which are both only dimly lit, due to no artificial light. Lite only by add of the sun threw windows, amazingly this you will find happens in the COUNTRY! lol excellent movie that only gets deeper after the 5th viewing. Not a single wasted scene, or word,can be witnessed in this one. I'm certain a movie, better made, in this genre has never occurred. Period. That is a low budget film, If you view this film and don't automatically want to view it at least one more time.....you are the casual sort and one never to be confused with a movie buff.
Sunday in the Country is another one of those downbeat seventies thrillers, although it doesn't seem to take influence from the likes of The Last House on the Left despite its sadistic nature and torture-themed plot. The film takes in ideas of justice and whether or not a normal man can be justified in taking the law into his own hands as we follow three bank robbers who wind up at a country home where a man has plans not to let the police deal with them and instead decides to lock them in his basement and deal out justice himself, much to the dismay of his granddaughter who doesn't take kindly to his sadistic intent. The film builds tension by way of constantly putting the idea of whether or not the man will kill the robbers himself. This might not sound too interesting, but director John Trent does a good job of ensuring that the vigilante themes work well. Ernest Borgnine doesn't exactly show off his full talent in the lead role, but still brings credence and believability to a man who wants justice on his own terms. The rest of the cast aren't too good, but nobody performs below the standard of a B-movie picture like this. The country atmosphere is well shown, and even though the locations aren't stunning, they bode well with the feel of the movie. Overall, I can't say that this is a great film; but it's certainly a good one and comes recommended to fans of seventies cult cinema.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
I saw this movie when it came out in 1974. At this time after Straw Dogs, there was a lot of these revenge movies released such as Death Weekend, The Texas Chainsaw Massacre etc and i thought this was one of the best. At this period of time in America there was a lot of this type of crime going on and i believe that Hollywood were trying to send the message across not to lie down and take it, but stand up and fight. Ernest Borgnine and Michael J Pollard gave fine performances and both may i add have never been given the recognition they deserve as actors. Ernest Borgnine can give a fine performance in a sympathetic role such as Marty and at the same time can give a chilling performance in such films as From Here To Eternity and Emperor Of The North. Michael J Pollard of course in Bonny And Clyde and Hannibal Brooks. The DVD version i have bought is a little disappointing. It looks as if it has been an old video transfered to DVD. Therefor i think it is best to wait awhile before buying this film on DVD. Kevin Thomas.
Three bank robber killers, including "loose cannon" (Michael J. Pollard), become trapped by roadblocks in the rural countryside. Abandoning their stolen vehicle, they hike to a distant farmhouse. Prepared and waiting is a church going farmer (Ernest Borgnine), his granddaughter, and an oafish farmhand. The three uninvited guests are ambushed by Borgnine, taken prisoner, and routinely tortured. As minutes pass, Borgnine becomes less and less stable, and more and more unhinged, leaving the granddaughter as the only hope for sanity to prevail. Although Borgnine gets to deal out his own brand of justice, it comes at a very high price. - MERK
***SPOILERS*** Pulling off a number of bank robberies that resulted in
the deaths of two bank tellers this trio of ruthless gangsters run into
two local youths on the side of the road in the open countryside.
Needing a different car, with new license plates, the three bank
robbers Dineili Ackerman and LeRoy, Louis Zorich Cec Linder & Michael
J. Pollard, cold-bloody gun down the driver Timmy Peterson, Ralph
Endersby, and his girlfriend Jennifer Logan, Susan Petrie, and then
head for the open highway.
Finding that all the roads out of Field County are blocked by local and highway police the three take off on foot looking for a place to stay until the heat's off and then make their escape. Seeing this farm in, what seems like, the middle of nowhere the three killers descend on it like a pack of wolves first cutting the phone lines and then pompously walking up to the front door to make their grand and murderous entrance; they didn't know it at the time but they'll find out soon enough that they walked right into the teeth of hell.
Disturbing and violent vigilante-like movie that leaves you in a state of shock with Ernest Borgnine as the peaceful and church going farmer Adam Smith. Adam uses his own brand of biblical justice, to avenge the blood of those who these three murderers spilled, that in a way made him far more vicious then his gangster victims.
At home with his grand daughter Lucy, Hollis McLaren, Adam spots through the window the killers moving in on his house and, knowing who they are and what they did from radio reports, sets a trap for them. Blasting the #1 man, Dineili, of the trio almost in half with his shotgun as he was allowed by Adam to entered the house Adam takes the other two, Ackerman and LeRoy, prisoner and puts them through such a hell that in the end they wished that the police got to them before Adam did.
Even though Adam Smith is well within his rights to defend his home and farm from the three criminal desperadoes what he did to them makes you wonder just who's more of the villain and psychopath in the film him or they. Instead of holding the two remanding bank robbers captive until the police come to take them into custody, like his grand daughter Lucy wanted him to do, Adam put them though the ringer by almost hanging them in his basement, with only their tip toes keeping them for getting strangled. Later Adam has Ackerman run for his truck, to drive back to town and get the police to come over, as he turns his two dogs Peter & Paul on Akerman who tear him to pieces.
LeRoy the most vicious of the three who Adam really wanted to do in gets saved by the police, whom Lucy got to come over, but later carjacks the patrol car killing the two officers. It's then when LeRoy comes back to the farm to get even with what Adam did to him that turned out to be the biggest, and last, mistake he was ever to make.
Even though Adam Smith is the avenging angel in the movie it's hard to really like him even though he saves everyone, himself his grand daughter Lucy and farm hand Luke (Vladimir Valerta), from the three killers. I just wondered how many people watching the movie would want him as a next door neighbor!
This baby fully represents my personal favorite kind of cult cinema! Released in the early 70's, obscure and almost completely untraceable, opening to the tunes of a moody and excessively outdated crooner's song whilst picturesque images of the peaceful countryside accompany the opening credits and last but not least introducing hard-laboring but conservative and slightly unworldly farmers as the lead characters. There's a proper name for this kind of movies and it's called "Hicksploitation". But "Sunday in the Country" is definitely more than just that! Obviously cashing in on the tremendous success of Sam Peckinpah's "Straw Dogs", this Canadian produced gem shamelessly glorifies urban violence and entirely revolves on the "protect what's yours" principle. It's also a revenge/vigilante thriller, but not the ordinary type. Usually the protagonists in revenge-thrillers themselves, or their dearest relatives, are subjected to torture and humiliation before extracting their well-deserved vengeance, but the lead character in "Sunday in the Country", farmer Adam Smith (another fabulous and expedient role of Ernest Borgnine), never really becomes directly affected by criminal violence and simply does what he does because he thinks the law isn't harsh enough. Smith is a seemingly noble widower, looking after his farm and granddaughter without ever missing a Sunday morning church service. On this particular Sunday, three relentless bank robbers (two of which resembling sophisticated bankers themselves instead of violent criminals) are at large in the countryside and have already butchered a young local couple before seeking refugee in Smith's secluded farming estate. But he's prepared for their arrival and grabs the opportunity to extract some good old-fashioned Biblical punishment on them rather than to notify the police. It may superficially look like a senselessly violent and sadistic exploitation flick, but "Sunday in the Country" is actually far more competent and inventive than it first seems. The plot juxtaposes two entirely different types of psychopaths and leaves it up to the viewer to decide who's the most dangerous. On the one side there's Leroy the outrageously spastic and most likely Atheist criminal and, opposed to him, the obsessively Catholic and stoically controlled trigger-happy farmer with his own brand of justice. It's a nice little psychological undertone to a seemingly bland and rough exploit movie. The violence & bloodshed is quite uncompromising, Ernest Borgnine and Michael J. Pollard are amazing (the rest of the cast can be ignored, though) and the atmosphere is undeniably 70's. A must-see for hillbilly-connoisseurs.
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