Major Charles Rane comes back from the war and is given a number of gifts from his hometown because he is a war hero. Some greedy thugs decide that they want to steal a number of silver ... See full summary »
Tommy Lee Jones,
A group of outcasts from different backgrounds and nationalities are forced by misfortune to work in an oil-drilling operation in South America. When fire breaks out of control, four of the outcasts are given the opportunity to earn enough money to get out by transporting six crates of unstable dynamite through miles of jungle in two ancient trucks. Written by
Keith Loh <firstname.lastname@example.org>, David Lee (email@example.com)
Sid Sheinberg suggested Roy Scheider for the lead role. He had previously worked with William Friedkin on The French Connection (1971). However, they had lost contact after Friedkin-at William Peter Blatty's insistence-had refused to cast Scheider as Father Karras in The Exorcist (1973). With Universal unenthusiastic about the project, acquiring Scheider, who had recently enjoyed enormous success in Jaws (1975) made the studio more hopeful and inclined to let the film materialize. Production notes on the 1998 Universal DVD release tell a different story, noting that the casting of Scheider as Scanlon/Dominguez was a "foregone conclusion" and "the ideal (perhaps the only) choice for the role". See more »
In the wide shots of the trucks crossing the bridge you can see the tow cables/anchor lines to the bridge going in and out of the water as the bridge rocks back and forth. See more »
Friedkin's Swan Song before Sinking into Mediocrity
A remake of Henri-George Cluzot's 1953 film The Wages of Fear (also on DVD in a lovely Criterion Disc), this William Friedkin film stars Roy Scheider (at his weary, doomed finest) as one of four men exiled to an unnamed South American country by their mistakes and crimes. Trapped in squalor (and it's damn convincing looking squalor, too, far beyond the sunbaked black-and-white compositions of Wages of Fear; this film looks like it's leaving mud on your shoes), unable to return to the lives they abandoned, they're driven by circumstance to accept a normally unthinkable job. They have to drive old, unstable dynamite from its storage site hundreds of miles over mountain terrain and washed-out roads to the location of an oil well fire so the blaze can be snuffed out. The pay is exorbitant -- but it's commiserate to the danger. The risks are colossal ... and they ultimately have no choice.
Sorcerer is tense, suspenseful film-making at its finest; you become physically uncomfortably during this film thanks to the incredible sense that at any minute our heroes would literally be blown to hell. (I mean, we all walk around with the philosophical knowledge we could die at any moment, but talk about your concrete metaphors ... ) Friedkin creates a palpable sense of place, and Scheider is immensely powerful as a man whose every move suggests that he knows he's doomed. Taut with suspense, completely convincing and breathtakingly human, Sorcerer is an unfairly maligned film that delivers in every way.
And the Score is unique and nightmarish. A new DVD would be welcome to many happy fans.
91 of 105 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?