A gangster, a crooked banker, a hitman and an arab terrorist are stranded and on the run in a small village in South America. Their only chance of escape is to drive two trucks filled with unstable nitroglycerin up a long and rocky mountain road in order to plug an escalating oil refinery blaze. With their deadly cargo likely to explode at the slightest bump, the four men must put aside their differences and work together to survive.
The only actor who was William Friedkin's original choice was the French-Moroccan Amidou, who played the Palestinian terrorist, Kassem. Friedkin was so impressed with his performance in Life Love Death (1969) that he wrote down his name immediately upon seeing the movie, expecting to collaborate with him one day. See more »
The monetary amount paid to the drivers is inconsistent throughout the film. The oil company first says they will pay "8,000 pesos to each driver". The driver's later demand double that amount (which would be 16,000 pesos). Later when Scanlon crosses the rope bridge he boasts that the two of them will get "double shares of 20,000 apiece" (double shares would actually be 32,000 apiece). At the end, Scanlon is given a check for 40,000 Dollars. See more »
We're carrying three cases each. One is enough to blow out your fire, six cases will blow out the whole field. That means you don't think all the trucks will make it, one of us is a backup.
We want double, and legal residence... or we don't drive.
You leave in four hours.
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The only opening credits at the beginning of the film are the studios' names followed by the film's graffiti style font title. Although by the late 1990's it was quite common to not have credits at the beginning of a film, in 1977 it was very unusual. See more »
Here's one exception to the general rule or opinion that re-makes are not as good as the originals. This is even better than the 1953 "The Wages Of Fear."
"Sorcerer" (a better title might have helped in the status of this film) is divided into three segments. The first part deals with the various criminal acts committed by the four principal characters in their particular part of the world.
The second part shows the seedy life these criminals must now endure in a poor South American town after they are forced to flee their respective countries.
The third segment is the major part of the story. An oil well fire rages out of control and these men are selected to do something that can solve the problem, in exchange for enough money to get them out of that hellhole. The job: transport cans of extremely-volatile nitroglycerin in a truck in a harrowing 218-mile trek through jungle terrain to the site of the disaster.
This long segment is one of the most suspenseful and well-photographed scenes I've ever seen on film. This is good stuff, particularly for the first-time viewer. There are some amazing scenes that just about wear you out.
Added to the no-nonsense story directed by one of the best, William Friedkin, is some unique electronic music by "Tangerine Dream." If you are thinking of the kids watching, there is no sex and very little profanity but some of the violence is very bloody.
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