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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
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 »
Bad wigs and occasionally hokey dialogue aside, there's a reason why several reviewers found the plot confusing. As originally scripted and filmed, the movie was almost three hours long. Kramer was required to edit it down to 97 minutes. Big pieces of the plot were left on the cutting-room floor.
This is, unfortunately, a frequent occurrence. People in positions of power on films become enamored of every word and fight against making any cuts to the script. It may be one of the producers, writers or stars; it varies from picture to picture. Whoever it is, they have the juice to get their way, so it all gets shot.
When distributors subsequently refuse to accept an overly long film, scenes must be deleted. Had they been deleted earlier, during the writing process, the missing bits could have been covered in existing dialog, or plot points could have been reconceived in order to be shortened. Once the film is in the can, it's too late. Dropped scenes mean dropped connections between what came before and what comes after.
The result is a mess like this one. Who knows whether we would have liked it better had we seen the original cut? The wig would still be as bad and there would probably be more hokey lines of dialogue. But the story would have made more sense -- at least to the extent that conspiracy stories ever make sense.
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