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Tightrope (1984) More at IMDbPro »

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Tightrope -- "Lured by the promise of kinky sex, two men prowl the French Quarter. One is a cop. The other is a killer.

Clint Eastwood is Wes Block, a lawman walking a Tightrope separating him from the man he strives to be and the man he fears he is. When investigating brutal sex murders, he uncovers a link between himself and the suspect. To the killer, the only good hooker is a dead one - especially if she's been with Block. Soon no woman who knows Block is safe, including those dearest to him (Genevieve Bujold and Alison Eastwood). Showcasing New Orleans at its moody best, writer/director Richard Tuggle (Escape from Alcatraz) adds shadings to Block that make him more than a stoic action hero. And Eastwood grabs the challenge with one of his best performances ever."


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Up 70% in popularity this week. See why on IMDbPro.
Richard Tuggle (screenplay)
View company contact information for Tightrope on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
17 August 1984 (USA) See more »
A cop on the edge...
Wes Block is a detective who's put on the case of a serial killer whose victims are young and pretty women... See more » | Full synopsis »
Plot Keywords:
1 nomination See more »
User Reviews:
Flawed but fascinating film noir & Eastwood pushes to the limit his star status... See more (67 total) »


  (in credits order) (verified as complete)

Clint Eastwood ... Wes Block

Geneviève Bujold ... Beryl Thibodeaux

Dan Hedaya ... Det. Molinari

Alison Eastwood ... Amanda Block
Jenny Beck ... Penny Block (as Jennifer Beck)

Marco St. John ... Leander Rolfe
Rebecca Perle ... Becky Jacklin
Regina Richardson ... Sarita
Randi Brooks ... Jamie Cory

Jamie Rose ... Melanie Silber
Margaret Howell ... Judy Harper
Rebecca Clemons ... Girl with Whip

Janet MacLachlan ... Dr. Yarlofsky
Graham Paul ... Luther
Bill Holliday ... Police Chief
John Wilmot ... Medical Examiner
Margie O'Dair ... Mrs. Holstein
Joy N. Houck Jr. ... Swap Meet Owner
Stuart Baker-Bergen ... Blond Surfer
Donald Barber ... Shorty

Robert Harvey ... Lonesome Alice

Ron Gural ... Coroner Dudley
Layton Martens ... Sgt. Surtees
Richard Charles Boyle ... Dr. Fitzpatrick

Becki Davis ... Nurse

Jonathan Sachar ... Gay Boy
Valerie Thibodeaux ... Black Hooker
Lionel Ferbos ... Plainclothes Gus
Eliott Keener ... Sandoval
Cary Wilmot Alden ... Secretary

David Valdes ... Manes
James Borders ... Carfagno
Fritz Manes ... Valdes
Jonathan Shaw ... Quono
Don Lutenbacher ... Dixie President
G. Wood ... Conventioneer (as George Wood)
Kimberly Georgoulis ... Sam
Glenda Byers ... Lucy Davis (as Glenda Byars)
John Schluter ... Piazza Cop (as John Schluter Jr.)
Nick Krieger ... Rannigan
Lloyd Nelson ... Patrolman Restic
David Dahlgren ... Patrolman Julio
Rod Masterson ... Patrolman Gallo
Glenn Wright ... Patrolman Redfish
Angela Hill ... Woman Reporter
Ted Saari ... T.V. News Technician

Directed by
Richard Tuggle 
Writing credits
(in alphabetical order)
Richard Tuggle  screenplay

Produced by
Clint Eastwood .... producer
Fritz Manes .... producer
Original Music by
Lennie Niehaus 
Cinematography by
Bruce Surtees (director of photography)
Film Editing by
Joel Cox 
Casting by
Phyllis Huffman 
Production Design by
Edward C. Carfagno 
Set Decoration by
Ernie Bishop 
Costume Design by
Glenn Wright 
Makeup Department
Barbara Guedel .... makeup artist
Marlene D. Williams .... hair stylist
Mark Shostrom .... special makeup effects artist (uncredited)
Production Management
Fritz Manes .... unit production manager
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
L. Dean Jones Jr. .... second assistant director
Paul Moen .... second assistant director
David Valdes .... first assistant director
Art Department
Edward Alona .... property master (as Eddie Alona)
Airick Kredell .... lead man
Bob Lawless .... stand-by painter
Michael Muscarella .... construction coordinator (uncredited)
Sound Department
Rick Alexander .... sound re-recording mixer (as Dick Alexander)
Neil Burrow .... sound effects editor
Gordon Davidson .... sound effects editor
Les Fresholtz .... sound re-recording mixer
William B. Kaplan .... sound mixer (as William Kaplan)
Alan Robert Murray .... sound effects editor
Alan Robert Murray .... supervising sound editor
Vern Poore .... sound re-recording mixer
Chester Slomka .... sound effects editor (as Chet Slomka)
Jules Strasser .... boom operator
Special Effects by
Joseph A. Unsinn .... special effects (as Joe Unsinn)
George Orrison .... stunts
Buddy Van Horn .... stunt coordinator
Buddy Van Horn .... stunts
George Orrison .... stunt double: Clint Eastwood (uncredited)
Buddy Van Horn .... stunt double (uncredited)
Camera and Electrical Department
Kirk Bales .... dolly grip (as Kirk E. Bales)
Billy Bragg .... camera operator: second unit
Sal Camacho .... assistant camera: second unit (as Salvador Camacho)
Jack N. Green .... camera operator (as Jack Green)
Leo J. Napolitano .... assistant camera (as Leo Napolitano)
Víctor Pérez .... best boy electric
Marsha Reed .... still photographer
Charles Saldana .... key grip
Bruce D. Spellman .... second grip (as Bruce Spellman)
Tom Stern .... gaffer
Johnny Walker .... assistant camera (as John Walker)
Jeff Wolf .... assistant camera: second unit
Alex Rodriguez .... lighting technician (uncredited)
Casting Department
Phyllis Huffman .... casting executive
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Deborah Hopper .... wardrobe: women (as Deborah Ann Hopper)
Glenn Wright .... wardrobe supervisor
Editorial Department
Donah Bassett .... negative cutter
Jack Garsha .... color timer
John Morrisey .... assistant editor
Music Department
Donald Harris .... music editor
Tom Boyd .... oboe soloist (uncredited)
James Thatcher .... musician: french horn (uncredited)
Transportation Department
Keith Dillin .... transportation captain
H. William Miller .... transportation coordinator (as Bill Miller)
Other crew
Marco Barla .... unit publicist
Paul A. Calabria .... animal handler (as Paul Calabria)
Judie Hoyt .... assistant to producers
Linda Sony Kinney .... production secretary
Michael Maurer .... auditor
Lloyd Nelson .... script supervisor
Elise Ganz .... studio teacher (uncredited)
Crew believed to be complete

Production CompaniesDistributorsOther Companies

Additional Details

Also Known As:
114 min
Color (Technicolor)
Aspect Ratio:
1.85 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:

Did You Know?

Susan Sarandon turned down the role of Beryl Thibodeaux, which was played by Geneviève Bujold. In an interview with the Los Angeles Times, Sarandon said she turned it down because "the link between violence and sex was very strong. I met with Clint Eastwood and I said, 'Aren't you worried, especially you, who everybody thinks is like Man Personified, (that) when your character starts to do some of this stuff, that it's going to have a link between sex and violence and treating women badly?' And he said, 'I don't think that it's my job to worry about that, I'm an actor.' "See more »
Boom mic visible: When Wes is in Becky's kitchen, offering him ice, the microphone dangles multiple times into the frame.See more »
Uniformed Police Officer:Wes, Beryl Thibodeaux from the rape something or other wants to see you.
Wes Block:Where is she?
Uniformed Police Officer:In the reception room.
Wes Block:Tell her I'm out.
Uniformed Police Officer:I did. She said she'd wait.
Wes Block:Good. Tell her I'm out of town.
[Wes turns around and sees Beryl standing there, she who gives him a sarcastic grin]
Beryl Thibodeaux:Welcome back.
See more »
Movie Connections:
Referenced in Videoclub (2013)See more »


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33 out of 39 people found the following review useful.
Flawed but fascinating film noir & Eastwood pushes to the limit his star status..., 4 June 2005
Author: Chris Jones ( from United Kingdom a dark and unsettling psychological thriller. Directed by Clint's protégé Richard Tuggle (who wrote the screenplay to the earlier Siegel-Eastwood classic ESCAPE FROM ALCATRAZ (1979), the film's first half is uncertain and suffers from clichéd (albeit well staged and visualised) New Orleans locations - shady whorehouse dives, red light tinged bars and over officious police procedural rooms and locker-room banter.

The plot itself is functional but nothing special: a serial killer with a penchant for young, pretty blondes, is terrorising the city by disposing of prostitutes by strangling them and dumping the bodies all over the city. The twist in TIGHTROPE is that the killer is also dogging the footsteps of kinky cop Detective Wes Block (Eastwood), a lonely divorcée with two young children. Block eases off the shackles of a tough day job by frequenting the very same sleazy dives that his thoroughly unpleasant nemesis does.

A predictable game of cat and mouse ensues, but the film's stock film noir origins are transcended by Eastwood's continual playing with his own star status and by a very interesting exploration of his character's private obsessions and genuinely touching relationship with his two young daughters. Special mention here for real-life daughter Alison Eastwood, quite superb as the older and more perceptive girl, who clearly suspects her troubled father is up to more than just "looking for something" on his late night travels through New Orleans's seamier districts.

The more conventional opening section of TIGHTROPE is distinctly misleading, largely because about half way through, the film's most interesting character (played by the truly excellent GENEVIEVE BUJOLD) comes much more to the fore. As the feisty and fiercely intelligent Rape Crisis Center head Beryl Thibodeaux (nice use of Bujold's French-Canadian heritage here for a movie set in New Orleans!) Bujold's sharp dialogue exchanges with ultra macho Detective Wes Block-Clint Eastwood are a constant joy, and, of course, edge us deeper into film noir territory as Block's kinky sexual practise and failed marriage become the focus of the investigation.

Tuggle does a generally excellent job of keeping the material visually interesting, although he pays less attention to the minor characters, wasting a great character actor like Dan Hedaya for the role of Block's sidekick on the investigation. Overall though, this is an underrated film in the Eastwood canon and worthy of your attention. It's a slick genre piece with a surprising ability to probe the areas of Eastwood's star persona not normally explored in the Dirty Harry series.

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See more (67 total) »

Message Boards

Discuss this movie with other users on IMDb message board for Tightrope (1984)
Recent Posts (updated daily)User
I like this a lot, but... pearce-duncan
actress ? soullimbo
Disappointing ending iain_somerville
An underrated Clint gem... omegaknight_d
disturbing movie lucatoni77
tightrope actress for whom I see no credit bgalbreath2003
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