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Nighthawks (1981) More at IMDbPro »

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Nighthawks -- Conservative street cop DaSilva reluctantly agrees to terminate an international terrorist who has demanded media attention. But DaSilva's "at-home" tactics are very much put to the challenge.


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David Shaber (screenplay)
David Shaber (story) ...
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Release Date:
10 April 1981 (USA) See more »
Wulfgar, an international terrorist holds the City of New York hostage, but Deke DaSilva, the most dangerous cop known to man, can take him down. See more »
Conservative street cop DaSilva reluctantly agrees to terminate an international terrorist who has demanded media attention. But DaSilva's "at-home" tactics are very much put to the challenge. Full summary » | Full synopsis »
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User Reviews:
Hauer steals the show See more (113 total) »


  (in credits order)

Sylvester Stallone ... Deke DaSilva

Billy Dee Williams ... Sgt. Matthew Fox

Lindsay Wagner ... Irene

Persis Khambatta ... Shakka Holland

Nigel Davenport ... Peter Hartman

Rutger Hauer ... Heymar 'Wulfgar' Reinhardt
Hilary Thompson ... Pam (as Hilarie Thompson)

Joe Spinell ... Lt. Munafo

Walter Mathews ... Commissioner
E. Brian Dean ... Sergeant
Caesar Cordova ... Puerto Rican Proprietor
Charles Duval ... Dr. Ghiselin
Tony Munafo ... Big Mike
Howard Stein ... Disco Manager
Tawn Christian ... Disco Hostess

Jamie Gillis ... Designer
Luke Reilly ... Conductor
Yvette Hawkins ... Mrs. Ntembwe
Einar Perry Scott ... Mr. Sostrom
Erle Bjornstad ... Mrs. Sostrom
Jacques Roux ... French Ambassador
Clebert Ford ... Nigerian Ambassador
Avind Harum ... Swedish Ambassador (as Eivind Harum)
Obaka Adedunyo ... Mr. Ntembwe
Corine Lorain ... Suzanne Marigny
Jean-Pierre Stewart ... Rene Marigny

Thomas Rosales Jr. ... Ripper (as Thomas Rosales)
John Shamsul Alam ... Ripper
José Angel Santana ... Ripper (as José Santana)
Patrick Fox ... Reporter
John Cianfrone ... Mugger - Central Park
Tim Marquart ... Mugger - Central Park
Tony Maffatone ... Mugger - Central Park
Tom Degidon ... Immigration Officer
Rita Tellone ... Brunette

Al Cerullo ... Helicopter Pilot (as Al Cerullo Jr.)
Karl A. Wickman ... Helicopter Pilot (as Karl Wickman)
Cliff Cudney ... A.T.A.C. Man
Joe Dabenigno ... A.T.A.C. Man

Steve Dash ... A.T.A.C. Man (as Steve Daskawisz)
John Devaney ... A.T.A.C. Man
Paul Farentino ... A.T.A.C. Man

Edward Fox ... A.T.A.C. Man
Randy Francklan ... A.T.A.C. Man
Roger Caine ... A.T.A.C. Man (as Al Levitsky)
Richard Noyce ... A.T.A.C. Man
Dar Robinson ... A.T.A.C. Man
Judee Wales ... A.T.A.C. Man
Luke Walter ... A.T.A.C. Man
Zoya Leporska ... Subway Hostage
Brian Osborne ... Orchard - London

Robert Pugh ... Kenna - London

Catherine Mary Stewart ... Sales Girl - London
Frederick Treves ... Chief Police Inspector - London
Sue Vanner ... Girl at Party - London (as Susan Vanner)
rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Santo Alam ... Ripper 1

Catherine Carlen ... Disco dancer

Maria Baan ... Hostage (uncredited)

Jim Beaver ... Subway Passenger (uncredited)

Jellybean Benítez ... DJ at Xenon (uncredited)
Wendy Hammers ... Dancer (uncredited)
Diane H. Kelly ... Dancer (uncredited)

Carrie Klein ... Mother / Hostage (uncredited)
Ralph Morse ... Furtive Customer (uncredited)
Gerard Murphy ... Detective Mooney (uncredited)
Jerry Schram ... Club Dancer (uncredited)
Tieg Thomas ... Disco Dancer (uncredited)

Directed by
Bruce Malmuth 
Gary Nelson (uncredited)
Writing credits
David Shaber (screenplay)

David Shaber (story) and
Paul Sylbert (story)

Produced by
Franklin R. Levy .... executive producer
Herb Nanas .... produced in association with
Martin Poll .... producer
Kathryn Stellmack .... associate producer
Mike Wise .... executive producer (as Michael Wise)
Bill Badalato .... line producer (uncredited)
Original Music by
Keith Emerson 
Cinematography by
James A. Contner (director of photography)
Film Editing by
Stanford C. Allen (film editor)
Christopher Holmes (edited by)
Casting by
Cis Corman 
Production Design by
Peter S. Larkin  (as Peter Larkin)
Set Decoration by
Frederic C. Weiler  (as Fred Weiler)
Costume Design by
Robert De Mora  (as Bob DeMora)
John Falabella 
Makeup Department
Fern Buchner .... makeup artist
Romaine Greene .... hair stylist (as Romaine Green)
Dick Smith .... special make-up
Production Management
Bill Badalato .... production manager
Terry Lens .... production manager: London
Serge Touboul .... production manager: Paris
Susan Zwerman .... assistant unit production manager
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
William J. Cassidy .... second unit director (as Bill Cassidy)
Robert V. Girolami .... first assistant director (as Robert Girolami)
Joseph P. Reidy .... second assistant director (as Joseph Reidy)
Duncan Scott .... dga trainee
Art Department
Richard T. Allen .... construction coordinator
Joseph Zackiewicz .... scenic artist
Sound Department
Bub Asman .... sound effects editor
Fred J. Brown .... supervising sound editor
Les Lazarowitz .... sound mixer
Tod A. Maitland .... boom operator (as Todd Maitland)
Mel Metcalfe .... sound re-recordist
Robert Sciretta .... sound recordist (as Bob Sciretta)
Michele Sharp .... sound effects editor
Richard Tyler .... sound re-recordist
Ray West .... sound re-recordist
Caryl Wickman .... loop dialogue editor
Special Effects by
Nick Allder .... special effects: London
Edward Drohan .... special effects
Walter Tatro .... special effects
Dar Robinson .... stunt coordinator
Cliff Cudney .... stunts (uncredited)
Tony Farentino .... stunts (uncredited)
Eddie Earl Hatch .... stunt double (uncredited)
Zoya Leporska .... stunts (uncredited)
Tony Maffatone .... stunts (uncredited)
Gary Robert .... stunts (uncredited)
Dar Robinson .... stunts (uncredited)
Victoria Vanderkloot .... stunt performer (uncredited)
Camera and Electrical Department
Enrique Bravo .... camera operator (as Ricky Bravo)
Gene Engels .... gaffer
Gary Muller .... assistant camera
Hank Muller .... assistant camera
Peter Norman .... cameraman: second unit
Ed Quinn .... key grip (as Edward Quinn)
Josh Weiner .... still photographer
Robert Willoughby .... special photographer (as Bob Willoughby)
Casting Department
Louis DiGiaimo .... additional casting (as Lou Digiamo)
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Marilyn Bishop .... wardrobe: women
Tom Bronson .... wardrobe: men
William A. Campbell .... wardrobe: men (as Bill Campbell)
Danajean Cicerchi .... wardrobe: women
Editorial Department
Darren T. Holmes .... assistant film editor (as Darren Holmes)
Virginia Katz .... assistant film editor
Music Department
Harry Betts .... arranger: musical score
Kenneth Hall .... music editor
Godfrey Salmon .... conductor
Keith Emerson .... music producer (uncredited)
Keith Emerson .... musician (keyboards) (uncredited)
Joel Fein .... music mixer (uncredited)
Paul Hardiman .... music engineer (uncredited)
Transportation Department
Michael Fennell .... transportation captain (as Mickey Fennell)
Patrick Hogan .... driver (uncredited)
Other crew
Charlie Alfano .... technical advisor: NYPD
Billy Badalato .... production assistant
Bruce Bahrenburg .... unit publicist
Fred Baron .... production assistant
Russell L. Bintliff .... technical advisor
Nick Chiarolanzio .... location auditor
Celia D. Costas .... production assistant (as Celia Costas)
Jane Nerlinger Evans .... assistant production associate (as Jane Nerlinger)
Jean Gilpin .... voice looping
Jerry Jaffe .... production assistant
Florence Nerlinger .... production associate
Gladys Poll .... assistant to producer
Karen Standard .... assistant to producer
Barbara Stoia .... script supervisor
Clayton Townsend .... production assistant

Production CompaniesDistributorsOther Companies

Additional Details

Also Known As:
"Night Hawks" - International (English title) (alternative spelling), USA (alternative title)
See more »
99 min
Color (Technicolor)
Aspect Ratio:
1.85 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Australia:R18+ | Canada:18 (Nova Scotia) | Canada:R (Nova Scotia) | Finland:K-18 | France:Tous publics | Iceland:16 | Ireland:15 | Netherlands:16 | Norway:16 (1981) | Philippines:R-18 | Singapore:NC-16 | South Korea:18 | South Korea:15 (cut) (1987) | Sweden:15 | UK:18 | UK:X (original rating) | USA:R (certificate #26087) | West Germany:16

Did You Know?

Dutchman Rutger Hauer's first American feature film.See more »
Audio/visual unsynchronized: When the song "Brown Sugar" plays at the disco, the second verse of the song is heard several times.See more »
Immigration Officer:Are you here for business or pleasure?
Heymar 'Wulfgar' Reinhardt:Pleasure, I hope.
Immigration Officer:Welcome to the United States.
See more »
Movie Connections:
SaocoSee more »


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27 out of 34 people found the following review useful.
Hauer steals the show, 22 August 2004
Author: getmynannerup from North Carolina

Remember a day when Rutger Hauer starred in good movies that actually saw wide theatrical release? No. Hmmmm. Hauer is one of my favorite actors and stars in two of my top ten favorite movies (Blade Runner and The Osterman Weekend), so it's hard not to already be slightly biased about the movie. I remember first hearing about Nighthawks on the Headliners and Legends biography of Stallone and how it was not as well received as his Rocky and First Blood movies. For shame, because Nighthawks does manage to be a top notch thriller most of the time. I could go into the plot, but I believe in telling people what I liked and disliked instead of parroting the plot details like almost every other review. (See, a movie to me is more fun when I only know a little about the story, instead of the first hour or so, because someone felt that they had to readers digest the entire film.)

Anyway, now that I've ranted, I have to admit that I enjoyed it for the most part, with the exception of the initial pacing. It continues to drag in places towards the middle, and takes a little over an hour to set up the crucial players backgrounds. The only real problem is that every time the film stops to focus on DeSilva (Stallone) and Fox (Williams), it spends twice as much time focusing on Wulfgar. Wulfgar is certainly a well crafted maniac, but when the movie is over we know almost nothing about Fox and only a little about Dee DeSilva. Still, the movie does succeed in making you care about our two main characters, by thrusting them into danger and having them do what is morally right (i.e. Towards the beginning of the film the two are in a drug raid, and refuse to take bribes from the perps who had apparently already paid off the cops from the first raid on their operation.

They're good cops, and it's their good guy image that endears them). I guess it would have been nice also to see a little more of Stallones relation to what's her name. (sorry, I haven't seen this in a about a month now.) I was interested in the prospect of a hero who was torn between the relation with his ex (who he was trying to re-ignite the flame with), and his duty. But, alas, she was just a narrative device who the writers have decided is only important in the last 15 minutes or so.

With all these cons, why did I still like it? Sudden scenes of high impact, good cast and acting all around, a villain who wasn't just a cardboard cutout, and Stallone's bitchin' beard, and a wholly convincing scenario.

The bottom line: This film is more akin to The French Connection than it is to Rocky. Methodical and often stylish, NightHawks deserves to at least be rented and watched with an open mind.

8 Stars out of 10

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