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Samuel Fuller's Street of No Return (1989)
"Street of No Return" (original title)

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A rock star-turned-bum, his vocal chords severed at the height of his career for the love of a woman, reclaims his forgotten past after viewing a music video and seeks revenge against the mobster who maimed him.


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Title: Samuel Fuller's Street of No Return (1989)

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Cast overview, first billed only:
Lieutenant Borel
Andréa Ferréol ...
Bernard Fresson ...
Marc de Jonge ...
Jacques Martial ...
Sérgio Godinho ...
António Rosário ...
Dominique Hulin ...
Gordon Heath ...
Black Bum
White Bum
Trevor A. Stephens ...
Lambert (as Trevor Stephens)
Filipe Ferrer ...


A rock star-turned-bum, his vocal chords severed at the height of his career for the love of a woman, reclaims his forgotten past after viewing a music video and seeks revenge against the mobster who maimed him.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


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Release Date:

9 August 1989 (France)  »

Also Known As:

Samuel Fuller's Street of No Return  »

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Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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User Reviews

strange, intense yet otherworldly swan song for Samuel Fuller
2 January 2005 | by (south Texas USA) – See all my reviews

Director Samuel Fuller's films SHOCK CORRIDOR and THE NAKED KISS are among my all-time favorites. His attempts to achieve a kind of gutter-level truth through expressionistic exaggeration make his films completely unique. This film takes the classic noir novel STREET OF NO RETURN by Davis Goodis and turns it into a strange cinematic vision that is intense and brutal, yet otherworldly and cerebral. First of all, the film exists in no particular time--like RUMBLEFISH, it blurs elements from different eras so that it exists in some kind of alternate reality. Also, while the film supposedly deals with American issues, it looks so foreign (it was shot in Lisbon, Portugal, a city that has a unique look, but not a familiar look, as Paris or London or Rome or Berlin would have) that the whole thing seems to play out on an allegorical level. Even the music by Keith Carradine is odd--Carradine (known for his 70s hit "I'm Easy") is rooted in a kind of 70s folk-pop in the James Taylor vein, but his music is given an 80s Euro dance feel, and he looks like glam-era Kim Fowley (in the earlier times in the story) or trashed-out hippie-punk Kim Fowley (in the later times in the story). And while the film deals head on with racial issues, the Black actors in the smaller roles look nothing like African-Americans, which again takes the film away from any realism. Bill Duke is excellent as the harried police inspector, Keith Carradine is impressive as the protagonist (quite different from the book, but not attempting to be like the book, but like the screenplay), and once one gets into the "feel" of the film, it carries the viewer along for a wild ride. This is a memorable last film for the great Samuel Fuller. It has all of his good qualities and visually it's pure Fuller. The strange look and European feel to the film remind us that the man could not get a film deal in his own country and, like Orson Welles, was forced to put together overseas projects wherever he could. The Fantoma DVD presentation of the film is superb as are the extras (commentary by Carradine, documentary about the making of the film, etc.). The women in the film--Valentina Vargas as the woman who Carradine desires, and Andrea Ferreol as the woman who has nurtured him and who loves him but who he sees as a maternal figure (the line about "you've always been like a mother to me" is painful to hear!)-- are both incredibly sexy in a raw, animal-like way that we don't often see in films nowadays. If you've ever enjoyed a Samuel Fuller film, you should seek out this DVD. If you want to try something different, buy or rent this rather than going to see some empty Hollywood product at the multi-plex.

15 of 18 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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