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Blow Out (1981)

 -  Mystery | Thriller  -  24 July 1981 (USA)
7.4
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Ratings: 7.4/10 from 21,861 users  
Reviews: 136 user | 102 critic

A movie sound recordist accidentally records the evidence that proves that a car accident was actually murder and consequently finds himself in danger.

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Title: Blow Out (1981)

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
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Peter Boyden ...
Sam
Curt May ...
John Aquino ...
...
Deborah Everton ...
...
Detective at Hospital
Missy Cleveland ...
Coed Lover (as Amanda Cleveland)
Roger Wilson ...
Lori-Nan Engler ...
Sue
Cindy Manion ...
Dancing Coed
Missy Crutchfield ...
Dancing Coed (as Missy O'Shea)
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Storyline

This stylish Brian DePalma thriller plays off the theme of the unsuspecting witness who discovers a crime and is thereby put in grave danger, but with a novel twist. Jack is a sound recordist who works on grade-B horror movies. Late one evening, he is recording sounds for use in his movies when he hears something unexpected through his sound equipment and records it. Curiosity gets the better of him when the media become involved, and he begins to unravel the pieces of a nefarious conspiracy. As he struggles to survive against his shadowy enemies and expose the truth, he doesn't know whom he can trust. Written by Tad Dibbern <DIBBERN_D@a1.mscf.upenn.edu>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

The Blow Out took them to the edge of terror . . . his questions took them way beyond [Video Australia] See more »

Genres:

Mystery | Thriller

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Official Sites:

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Language:

Release Date:

24 July 1981 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Personal Effects  »

Box Office

Budget:

$18,000,000 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Al Pacino was director Brian De Palma's first choice for the role of Jack Terry. When he proved unavailable John Travolta was signed, prompting a suggestion from at least one studio executive to cast Olivia Newton-John, Travolta's Grease (1978) co-star, in the role of Sally (which De Palma refused). See more »

Goofs

In the pre-credit "slasher movie" sequence, the shadowed reflections of both the "slasher" (intended or, at least, credible) and the camera operator and his Steadicam (unintended) can be soon in the tile wall to the right of the showering girl. Perhaps the reason the girl was hired, as explained to John T's character in the projection room by the film's producer, was thought to be a sufficient distraction so as to preclude a retake. See more »

Quotes

Jack Terry: [to Sally] So you got your choice. You can be crazy or dead.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in The Cinema Snob: Moment by Moment (2013) See more »

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User Reviews

 
If you liked F/X...
4 April 2004 | by (Orlando, Florida) – See all my reviews

If you liked F/X, you'll probably like Blow Out and vice versa because both films involve a person who uses their craft to solve a highly corrupt case of murder.

While F/X's Rollie Tyler was a special effects engineer, our hero in Blow Out is a sound technician who must piece together parts of a sound recording (along with some other vital information from other sources along the way) to solve the murder of the gubernatorial candidate, a death which the police have written off as a homocide. Travolta employs Nancy Allen's help, a rather dumb prostitute who was in the car with the victim when their car ran off the bridge, but who is the only survivor and essential key to unlocking the mystery. They are dealing with a very relentless killer who will stop at nothing to make sure the trail of evidence leading to him is eliminated.

It is a typical DePalma movie in that it is done with many Hitchcock elements (they didn't call him the master of suspense for nothing) and also that he works with movies-in-a-movie (see 'Body Double' and 'Dressed to Kill'). It is an enjoyable crime and mystery movie in the days when John Travolta movies were still fun to watch.


14 of 19 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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John Lithgow's character faulknerfan123
All you Blow Out fans out there. fitzjohnm
Is DePalma a misogynist? lautanner
Worst cover art ever! Samme7
de plama is a copy-cat alok_ranjan3
the beginning great, the ending terrible nickzee
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