Black Sunday (1977)

R  |   |  Action, Drama, Thriller  |  11 March 1977 (USA)
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Reviews: 71 user | 38 critic

Black Sunday is the powerful story of a Black September terrorist group attempting to blow up a Goodyear blimp hovering over the Super Bowl stadium with 80,000 people and the president of the United States in attendance.



(novel), (screenplay), 2 more credits »
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Cast overview, first billed only:
Steven Keats ...
Bekim Fehmiu ...
Colonel Riat
Victor Campos ...
Joseph Robbie ...
Robert J. Wussler ...
Robert Wussler (as Robert Wussler)
Tom Brookshier
Walter Brooke ...


Terrorist organization Black September is planning an attack on the United States. A woman called Dahlia is the one overseeing the operation. She was in the Middle East with the other members of the organization, discussing the operation when some Israelis came in; the leader, Major Kobakov had his gun on her but didn't shoot her. Kobakov then informed the US what they found. Though they don't know what their operation is, Kobakov assures them that it will be devastating. So, with FBI man, Corley, they try to find out what it is before it's too late. But they both have different ways of doing things, and since Kobakov is the visitor, he is warned to watch it. Dahlia's "partner in crime" is Michael Lander, a Vietnam P.O.W., who is psychologically scarred by that experience, thus making him very susceptible to her machinations. Written by <>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


For 100,000 people, Monday may never come See more »


Action | Drama | Thriller


R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

11 March 1977 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Domingo negro  »

Filming Locations:


Company Credits

Production Co:

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:




Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?


The film was made and released about two years after its source novel of the same name by Thomas Harris had been first published in 1975. See more »


When the blimp takes off from its base in South Florida en-route to the SuperBowl, you can see mountains in the distance. South Florida's terrain is flat. See more »


Captain Michael J. Lander: [after detonating the test bomb in an aircraft hanger ] It's completely symmetrical!
[Sprints into the hanger]
Captain Michael J. Lander: On both sides!
Dahlia: Michael!
[Chasing after him]
Captain Michael J. Lander: It works!
Dahlia: Michael we need...
Captain Michael J. Lander: Look darling, look at this!
Dahlia: Michael please lets go!
Captain Michael J. Lander: No god dammit you're going to look at this we're not going anyplace, now look, now study that look at that! That's brilliance darling what are you talking about going? Look at that! We deserve this moment sweetheart, when the big one goes off were both going with it...
See more »


Spoofed in Duct Tape Forever (2002) See more »


(Israeli National Anthem)
Traditional Hebrew melody
Words by Naftali Herz Imber
Briefly Played and Sung in Hebrew by an offscreen group in Miami
See more »

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User Reviews

Top notch excitement
15 May 2002 | by (Chicago) – See all my reviews

"Black Sunday" is a flat out exciting motion picture about the planning and execution of a terrorist attack during the Super Bowl. Robert Shaw plays the head of an agency trying to prevent the attack. Bruce Dern is at his creepy best as a brainwashed Vietnam vet enlisted by the lovely Marthe Keller to help carry out the sinister plan. Dern is a blimp pilot and the perfect person to help detonate a contraption that will send thousands of deadly needles into the unsuspecting crowd. Dern was born to play parts like this and it's a reminder of how terrific an actor he is and how sad it is that he doesn't work as much as he used to.

The final 40 minutes is intercut between the game (actually shot during the real Cowboys-Steelers Super Bowl game of 76) and the unfolding of the final stages of the plot. It's tense and exciting as Shaw and cohorts commandeer helicopters to try to catch the blimp heading to the big game to unleash its deadly attack.

Kudos to director John Frankheimer for keeping the pacing on this 2 hour 25 minute thriller moving. The editing is first rate and the music score by John Williams is one of his best though it is never mentioned when his name comes up.

If you like a good thriller that is never boring and will keep you on the edge of your seat, I highly recommend "Black Sunday."

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