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Catchfire (1990)

R  |   |  Action, Comedy, Crime  |  3 April 1990 (USA)
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Ratings: 5.4/10 from 2,470 users  
Reviews: 40 user | 12 critic

A witness to a mob assassination flees for her life from town to town, switching identities, but cannot seem to elude Milo, the chief killer out to get her.


(as Alan Smithee)


(story), (screenplay), 1 more credit »
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Cast overview, first billed only:
Greek (as G. Anthony Sirico)
Frank Gio ...
Clifford Bartholomew ...
Fed #2
Kevin Bourland ...


An artist (Foster) witnesses a Mafia hit and calls the police. At the police station she realizes that the Mafia has a man in the force, so she runs. Trailed by the police, who need her testimony, and a hitman (Hopper) hired by the Mafia, she goes to Mexico, where eventually she meets the hitman, who has become infatuated after studying her art and life to prepare for the hit. Written by Ed Sutton <>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

mafia | hitman | mob | witness | artist | See All (75) »


When murder is your business, you'd better not fall in love with your work.

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language, sensuality and violence | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

3 April 1990 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Backtrack  »

Filming Locations:


Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


(director's cut) | (theatrical)

Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Vestron Pictures were unhappy with director Dennis Hopper's original 180 minutes cut of the film and re-edited it without his knowledge. Hopper was so enraged he sued the company, but they had already gone bankrupt. He nevertheless insisted on the anonymous Alan Smithee credit. See more »


When Anne and Milo are about to drive off in an SUV, the mountain backdrop is flapping in the wind. See more »


Milo: There's something going on here that I really don't understand, but I like it.
See more »


References Last Tango in Paris (1972) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

2 July 2001 | by See all my reviews

Splendid, offbeat film that blurs the line between the refined arty types (Foster's Anne Benton), and lowlifes (Hopper, Pesci). Exceptional cinematography and editing, plus a neat script, make this film appear to be a template for Tarantino, as we sort of define the term "opposites attract" with this film!

Hopper, Pesci, Price, and Turturro all give terrific performances, but Foster steals the flick in an extremely uncharacteristic performance. Made around the time of The Accused, this is Foster at her unrestrained, corset-less best. This is Foster as truly one of the hottest, sexiest women in Hollywood. She seriously could have had a career as a sex kitten (Hard to believe I know, but watch Backtrack, whoo!), but after The Silence of the Lambs, she never really returned to this turf. It's sad, because her wonderfully loopy, sexy performance, is glorious... one of her best.

8 of 13 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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