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The Loveless (1981)

R | | Drama | 25 May 1984 (Sweden)
Trouble ensues when a motorcycle gang stops in a small southern town while heading to the races at Daytona.

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Cast overview, first billed only:
Robert Gordon ...
Marin Kanter ...
J. Don Ferguson ...
Tina L'Hotsky ...
Sportster Debbie
Lawrence Matarese ...
La Ville
Danny Rosen ...
Phillip Kimbrough ...
Ken Call ...
Elizabeth Gans ...
Margaret Jo Lee ...
John King ...
Bob Hannah ...
Jane Berman ...
Lady in T-Bird
A.B. Calloway ...
Truck driver in diner


Trouble ensues when a motorcycle gang stops in a small southern town while heading to the races at Daytona.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Sworn to Fun...Loyal to None!!! See more »




R | See all certifications »




Release Date:

25 May 1984 (Sweden)  »

Also Known As:

Breakdown  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

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Technical Specs

Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?


The film was originally titled "US 17" after the highway in Georgia where it takes place. Distributors renamed it "Breakdown" for its worldwide premiere at a film festival in Switzerland. See more »


Vance: [Voiceover]
  • You never can tell on a day like this- things could be goin' jake one minute, then, presto- before you know it, you're history.

See more »


Featured in The Bad Sister (1983) See more »


Coffee House Blues
Written by Evan Lurie
See more »

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User Reviews

Hyperrealism in real time.
17 May 2002 | by (cd332.livejournal.com) – See all my reviews

I think this movie comes closest to what bikers experience while on the road. Boredom, waiting, mechanical problems, prejudice of the locals. I have done many transcontinental motorcycle rides alone, and this one captures it best. You're not going to come across Timothy Leary in the middle of nowhere (Roadside Prophets), or pick up Nicholson and get blown away (Easy Rider). There are long stretches where absolutely nothing happens. There is a scene where Dafoe sits in the bar and it is filmed in real time, security-camera style. Unbearable minutes go by and nothing happens at all, while a gorgeous Brenda Lee song "I Want To Be Wanted" plays in the background.

The loneliness of riding alone and coming into town alone is what makes this movie poignant and beautiful in a quiet way.

This movie is also a rockabilly heaven. Eddy Dixon's superb opening song Relentless is possibly one of the most difficult songs to find in print. NYC rockabilly singer Robert Gordon also serves up some over-the-top method acting here. DaFoe's narrative voice is already wonderful here, as is Bigelow's filmmaking style. Sometimes I explain this movie to people as one where the tables are turned and men get objectified. It's an interesting dynamic to see what mainstream films have done for so long to women done to men.

The plot is about a group of bikers who are en route to Florida to see some auto/bike racing. They are coming from different states and planning to converge at a meeting point. One of the biker's Harleys break down and there is a delay that holds them up in a small Georgia town. Dafoe runs into a daughter of a redneck at a gas station and hooks up there. Everything finally hits the fan at the local bar.

Lots of nice shots of vintage bikes. Harley shovelheads and knuckleheads are in effect throughout the movie.

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