8 Million Ways to Die (1986)

R  |   |  Action, Adventure, Crime  |  25 April 1986 (USA)
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Scudder is a detective with the Sheriff's Department who is forced to shoot a violent suspect during a narcotics raid. The ensuing psychological aftermath of this shooting worsens his ... See full summary »



(book), (screenplay), 2 more credits »
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Cast overview, first billed only:
Angel Maldonado
Lisa Sloan ...
Linda Scudder
Christa Denton ...
Laurie Scudder
Wilfredo Hernández ...
Hector Lopez (as Wilfredo Hernandez)
Luisa Leschin ...
Hector's Wife
Chip Arnold ...
Homicide Detective
Deputy D.A.
Jack Younger ...
Zoaunne LeRoy ...


Scudder is a detective with the Sheriff's Department who is forced to shoot a violent suspect during a narcotics raid. The ensuing psychological aftermath of this shooting worsens his drinking problem and this alcoholism causes him to lose his job, as well as his marriage. During his recovery through Alcoholics Anonymous, he meets a mysterious stranger who draws him back into a world of vice. In trying to help this beautiful woman, he must enter a crime-world of prostitution and drugs to solve a murder, while resisting the temptation to return to his alcohol abuse. Written by Tad Dibbern <DIBBERN_D@a1.mscf.upenn.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


There Are Eight Million Stories In The Naked City... See more »


R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:






Release Date:

25 April 1986 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

8 Millionen Wege zu sterben  »

Filming Locations:

Box Office


$18,000,000 (estimated)


$1,305,114 (USA)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


During the shoot out at the end of the movie, the trolley system is a sister to "Angels Flight" in the Bunker Hill part of L.A. Nothing is ever mentioned about this, anywhere on the web. See more »


When Scudder shoots Hector in the chest, a small amount of blood leaks out of the wound, and there is no blood on the blue door behind Hector. This suggests the bullet stayed inside Hector's body. Hector continues standing for several seconds, with a small amount of blood trickling. The next second, Hector drops and the front of his shirt is drenched in blood, as well as the door behind him. This suggests an explosive through-and-through shot. See more »


Joe Durkin: The murder rate used to be a thousand a year. Three a day, and that was high. Now it's five. Higher in the summer. Fourteen two Fridays ago. We get the death penalty six, seven times a day, only it's not for murderers, it's for ordinary citizens.
Matthew 'Matt' Scudder: Yeah, there are 8 million stories in the naked city. Remember that old TV show? What we have in this town is eight million ways to die.
See more »


References Naked City (1958) See more »

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User Reviews

Eight million reasons to see cool eightie's flick
21 November 2012 | by (Australia) – See all my reviews

You've had Scarface, now we have it's offspring. If your a Jeff Bridges face, run, not walk, down to the video store and hire this gem. You'll be entertained to the max. The movie throws us right into the action with Bridges and his group of cops from the sheriff's department about to apprehend an hispanic drug dealer. Bridges and his pal too, aren't shy about taking a tot of whatever from a cannister, prior. Forced to shoot this dealer down, as one of Bridge's mate is taking a whacking from one, of those nasty Louisville sluggers, he's questioned along with his friend. That night, him and his friend get sozzled, Bridges, the more drunk of the two, who tends to fall off bar stools. He falls into a guilt drunken phase, the following scene an emotional one between him and his family, over some awlfully sad music. Bridges is so believable in his role here, we really acknowledge what a great actor this guy is. To think he never won an Oscar until 2010's Crazy Heart is criminal. We move a few months down the track to an AA meeting that Bridges is attending. Here, one of the other members, gives him a fat fee, to help this young prostitute, Sunny, (an awesome performance by Alexandra Paul, prior to her Baywatch days) get free of her pimp, Angel (Andy Garcia in probably his best role still). For all we know, this woman stranger could be her mother. His attempt to protect her fails, when Sunny is snatched from Bridges in one blood splashing action scene, worthy of it's R rating. Again Bridges falls into a pit, blacking out. When he comes to, he's the one who must unravel this mystery, with the help of Sunny's hooker friend, Sarah, played by Rossanna Arquette, very good in her role, but not great like the others. You've gotta love Angel's pad. A big castle like building that has been used in a cheap "City lights film" I won't mention. This spread operates as a casino and bordello, where in one scene, we see just how dangerous Angel really is. A small electic tram transports it's customers to it's entrance up top. This film has style, it's valet guys sporting it too. I love the scene where Bridges and Sarah meet Angel and his goons in the big car park outside this big museum, where a lot of angry expletives are exchanged in some good meaty and funny dialogue. Let's face it, this movie doesn't have the best script in the world, but there are some classicly original lines that stick, one involving Sunny, describing her anatomy. Bridges and Garcia share this colorful conversation over sno cones, Angel proudly provides. How cool and original is that. Sarah is snatched back from Bridges who was trying to get answers from her, thus he must get her back as she's in dangerous waters now. This flick uses great L.A. locations and is beautifully shot, Hal Ashby's last film too. The Lawrence Block novel is vastly different, where it's set in New York, and the pimp's name is Chance unlike the Chance character in the film, Angel's silent partner I guess. You'll get this joke if you watch this film. Another scene involving a string of expletives takes place later in a warehouse as we build towards our climax. They were really in need of a script doctor that day. The climax is rewarding, as is it's happy after scene. What we've got here is a good drama, a little disjointed in bits, as in it's dialogue, but it's exciting, involving, and more so, it's different. And those sort of movies, I like. Though slow paced, this really didn't bother me. It works for this movie as we get really get to scratch the surface of Bridges and Arquette's characters. For me, what I loved most about this timeless flick, was it's locations. This is one of those eighties bucket list classics you must see. This was another '86 movie I would of loved to seen at the cinema, but we can't turn back time, can we.

3 of 4 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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