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The Domino Killings (1977)
"The Domino Principle" (original title)

R  |   |  Thriller, Drama  |  2 June 1977 (Netherlands)
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Ratings: 5.7/10 from 1,417 users  
Reviews: 27 user | 11 critic

Tucker is a chronic underachiever and a loser. A Vietnam war veteran who just can't seem to keep out of trouble, in the years since his discharge. The only thing he got out of the war was ... See full summary »



(novel), (screenplay)
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Cast overview, first billed only:
Neva Patterson ...
Jay Novello ...
Joseph V. Perry ...
Bowkemp (as Joseph Perry)
Ted Gehring ...
Claire Brennen ...
Ruby (as Claire Brennan)
Bob Herron ...


Tucker is a chronic underachiever and a loser. A Vietnam war veteran who just can't seem to keep out of trouble, in the years since his discharge. The only thing he got out of the war was his skill with a rifle. Now, serving a long stretch in prison for murder, he has hit rock-bottom. But one day a man in a three-piece suit visits him in prison, a man he has never seen before, and informs him that he can walk out of prison a free man if he will shoot someone for them, no questions asked. Written by Strelnikoff

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Trust no one. No one.


Thriller | Drama


R | See all certifications »





Release Date:

2 June 1977 (Netherlands)  »

Also Known As:

Das Domino Komplott  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?


The film was made and released about eighteen months after its source novel of the same name by Adam Kennedy was first published in 1975. Kennedy was a former 50s & 50s actor who also wrote the screenplay for this film, the only ever screen adaptation from one of his books. See more »


The bread truck carrying Tucker and Spiventa is shown driving across the Golden Gate Bridge in the southbound direction from Marin County to San Francisco. The very next scene, however, in which the prisoners are escorted out of the truck, clearly takes place under the roadway back on the Marin side of the bridge. See more »


Referenced in Hollywood Mouth 2 (2014) See more »


No Puedo Olvidar
Lyrics by Orlando Peres
Music by Billy Goldenberg
See more »

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User Reviews

Who Shot the Plot?
28 December 2010 | by (Los Angeles) – See all my reviews

Vietnam veteran Gene Hackman (as Roy Tucker) is serving time in San Quentin for murder. Then, mysterious dark-suited Richard Widmark (as Tagge) arrives to spring Mr. Hackman from prison in return for his assassinating somebody very important. Hackman insists foul-mouthed cell-mate Mickey Rooney (as Oscar Spiventa) should also be released. On the outside, Hackman is eventually reunited with wigged-out wife Candice Bergen (as Eleanor "Ellie" Tucker). Handsome young Edward Albert (as Ross Pine) is part of the plan. Ever reliable Eli Wallach (as Tom "General" Reser) helps arranges stuff.

Very disappointing, "The Domino Principle" isn't what you're expecting from a Gene Hackman movie directed by Stanley Kramer. It seems to have suffered from re-writes during filming and/or extensive cutting. The opening monologue turns out to be pointless, along with much of what follows. It's impossible to determine what was intended.

The supporting cast must have been wondering what happened. Mr. Rooney ponders sexual exploits amusingly. "Instead of getting her period every 28 days, she had periods that lasted 28 days," is how Rooney describes one disinterested female; it's one of his cleaner observations. As we watch the plot unravel before our very eyes, Mr. Widmark sums it up as, "The bigger the stink, the more there is to cover up." Mr. Albert offers a good, albeit underdeveloped, characterization. In a noteworthy final appearance, watch for veteran Jay Novello as an immigration official who wants to see Hackman's passport.

**** The Domino Principle (3/23/77) Stanley Kramer ~ Gene Hackman, Candice Bergen, Edward Albert, Mickey Rooney

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