A seeming good Samaritan (Debra Winger) hires a private detective (Nolte) to prove a teen sitting in prison on a murder charge is innocent. His investigation discovers deep corruption in a ... See full summary »
After World War II, their town was a pile of rubble. Gennosuke, the second generation boss of the Kamizu Group was upholding yakuza chivalry by keeping black-market and illegal items out of... See full summary »
Axel Freed is a literature professor. He has the gambling vice. When he has lost all his money, he borrows from his girlfriend, then his mother and finally some bad guys that chase him. Despite all of this he cannot stop gambling.
Jean-Louis Trintignant plays a French contract assassin hired by a Los Angeles crime family, ostensibly to perform a hit on some other mafia target. But simultaneously, as he arrives to do ... See full summary »
In 1958, two teenagers take their pride and joy, a hopped-up Chevy, and start a cross-country journey to enter it in the National Championship drag races in California. Along the way they ... See full summary »
A young district attorney seeking to prove a case against a corrupt police detective encounters a former lover and her new protector, a crime boss who refuses to help him in this gritty ... See full summary »
Grace Quigley is nearing the end of her life, living alone in her New York apartment. One day she witnesses a murder being committed by top hit-man, Seymour Flint. She decides to blackmail ... See full summary »
Kit Le Fever
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,
Vietnam veteran Ray Hicks gets conned into helping his buddy John Converse smuggle some heroin, only to wind up on the lam with John's wife when the deal goes sour. Written by
Alan Sepinwall <firstname.lastname@example.org>
It is often believed that film's title was changed from "Dog Soldiers" so as not to be confused with the similarly titled novel of The Dogs of War (1980) by Frederick Forsyth which got made and released as a movie a couple of years later. However, the producers changed the title when they acquired the rights to use the song "Who'll Stop the Rain". The film was still released though as "Dog Soldiers" in a number of foreign territories. See more »
Very depressing but powerful anti-war tale, despite being occasionally muddled
1978 saw the release of many anti-Vietnam films. While both "Coming Home" and "The Deer Hunter" were big successes commercially and critically, "Who'll Stop the Rain" was unfortunately overlooked for some reason, which is a shame. Despite being set in America and marketed originally as an action thriller, its an effective portrayal of the mental strain of veterans returning from the horrific war. Its not completely successful - occasionally the screenplay is a bit muddled and sometimes the treatment of such disturbing material is too genteel. Still, the story is so compelling it manages to nail its point home by the end. The conclusion in particular is downbeat to the point of sheer nihilism.
What makes the film work so well, in addition to a good script, is the acting. All around, the entire cast gives fantastic performances. There's not a single weak note in the ensemble. Nick Nolte, an often ridiculed performer, shows he can be a remarkably powerful actor if he applies himself. Tuesday Weld is not as glamorous as she usually is, which helps her create one of her most compelling roles. Michael Moriarty is good also as the morally ambiguous character who manages to be sympathetic by the end. The villains in the cast are all unlikable but also well developed, especially the two thugs who show signs of changing their hearts. The direction by Karel Reisz isn't anything masterful on an aesthetic level, but it definitely gets the job done. "Who'll Stop the Rain" is a powerful and intelligent film, a kind of movie that would only be released by a mainstream studio in the 70s and would be extinct in the next decade of American cinema being overrun and dumbed down by Jerry Bruckenheimer. (8/10)
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