6 user 4 critic

Courage (1984)

R | | Thriller
Marathon runners are taken captive in desert by right-wing militia.





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Cast overview, first billed only:
Pete Canfield
Roger Bower
Colonel Crouse
Tim Maier ...
Craig Jensen
Lisa Sutton ...
Brian Curry ...
Jeff Curry ...
Anthony Palmer ...
Herb Jensen
Noel Conlon ...
Clay Matthews
Kelly Yaegermann ...
John Roselius ...
Joe Massengale ...
Matt Johnston ...


A trio of long-distance runners are setting out on what looks to be the ultimate adventure weekend: a seventy-two mile run through the New Mexico desert. Things start off uneventfully, but soon the three run into a survivalist militia calling itself The Citizen's Brigade. They are captured by The Brigade, only to be released with a warning from the leader, Colonel Crouse. Their luck runs out when suddenly the militia goes back on its word and resumes hunting the runners. This time, however, they are not looking to capture them, but to kill them. What are these desert soldiers trying to do? And will the three live to run another marathon? Written by Jean-Marc Rocher <rocher@fiberbit.net>

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Dead Heat  »

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User Reviews

From zero to hero in 72 miles
19 June 2007 | by (the Draconian Swamp of Unholy Souls) – See all my reviews

It's truly incomprehensible how some rubbishy movies are so popular and easily available whilst, at the same time, there still are such wonderful gems out there that sadly remain obscure and undiscovered. I doubt many people have ever heard of "Death Run" (a.k.a "Courage" and "Raw Courage"). I hadn't heard about it either, before an even bigger movie-buff than myself recommended it to me. It's a damn shame that this film is so underrated because it's a terrifically tense and action-packed 80's thriller with great acting performances as well as a solid screenplay and a unique setting. "Death Run" is more or less Ronny Cox' one-man-project. This shamefully neglected B-movie star co-wrote, produced and starred as one the lead characters, and he did a tremendously fine job in all three areas. Three generations of ambitious runners decide to run through the desert area for charity. Pete Canfield (Cox) is the elderly guy who never was quite satisfied with what he accomplished in life, Craig (Tim Maier) is the young lad who's constantly put under pressure by his dominant father and middle-aged Roger (Art Hindle) is the potent friend who endless supports and consults the other two. Deep into the desert, the trio encounters a bunch of crazed wannabe-military vigilantes from Denver (led by the sneering M. Emmet Walsh, who's once again in great shape). When their dangerous "training exercises" go awry and result into a fatal accident, the protagonists literally have to run for their lives, as the vigilantes won't allow them to reach the end of the desert alive. And since it's incredibly hard to outrun maniacs on motorcycles, they may even have to put up a fight. "Death Run" is drama, satire, action, and revenge-exploitation all in one. The premise is simple but effective and especially the villains are menacingly realistic. Crazed and trigger-happy vigilantes form a much bigger threat than, say, giant desert worms or space invaders and hence the suspense is much more genuine. The script makes full use of the inescapable desert location, with all its natural death traps and hideout places. There are some unexpected surprises and effective shocks to experience in this movie and the sober musical guidance is excellent. Personally, I think the ending could have been a little better, but generally speaking "Death Run" is an awesome film and here's to hoping a fancy DVD-release will follow soon. Recommended, for sure.

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