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The Hitman (1991)

R  |   |  Action, Crime, Thriller  |  25 October 1991 (USA)
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Ratings: 5.3/10 from 2,420 users  
Reviews: 34 user | 10 critic

After surviving an attempt on his life by his former partner, officer Cliff Garrett (Norris) exacts revenge on those who wronged him by going undercover as a hit man. He works to gain the ... See full summary »


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Cast overview, first billed only:
Cliff Garrett / Grogan
Ronny 'Del' Delaney
Al Waxman ...
Marco Luganni
Christine De Vera
Salim Grant ...
Tim Murphy
Ken Pogue ...
Marcel Sabourin ...
Andre Lacombe
Bruno Gerussi ...
Frank Ferrucci ...
James Purcell ...
Candus Churchill ...
Lemke (as Alan Peterson)
Alex Bruhanski ...
Stephen Dimopoulos ...


After surviving an attempt on his life by his former partner, officer Cliff Garrett (Norris) exacts revenge on those who wronged him by going undercover as a hit man. He works to gain the reputation and trust needed in order to be accepted by the burgeoning Seattle-area criminal underworld, but it is all done in order to take it down from within. Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


He's so far undercover he may never get back.


Action | Crime | Thriller

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

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

Parents Guide:






Release Date:

25 October 1991 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Hitman  »

Box Office


$4,654,288 (USA)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Originally envisioned as a vehicle for Charles Bronson by its writers, but offered to Chuck Norris by Cannon -- who had a relationship with the star. See more »


When the woman gets shot in her car through the driver's window, the window breaks before the bad guy pulls the trigger. See more »


Racist Father: [after Garrett watches him abuse his son all the way back to their house for losing a fight to a black kid, he walks up to the front door and rings the bell] Well well well! And what the hell do you want, nigger lover?
[Garrett punches the guy in the nose through the screen on the storm door, and walks away]
See more »


Featured in Sidekicks (1992) See more »


On The Road Again
Written by Floyd Jones and Alan Wilson
Performed by Andy Prieboy
Courtesy of Dr. Dream Records, Inc.
from the album "...Upon my Wicked Son"
Used by arrangement with Frederick Music Company and EMI Unart Catalog Inc.
See more »

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User Reviews

Gangsters feel Chuck's cold-blooded wrath!
27 April 2008 | by (the Mad Hatter's tea party.) – See all my reviews

Nearly every film that Norris starred in from the mid 80s through to the 90s was under the production company 'Cannon'. Is that a bad thing? No not really, as long it delivered on the goods that we expected. They were mainly cheap, but quite violent and senseless entertainment. However there's something about "The Hit-man" that makes me think much more highly of it than I probably should. It passes the time, but this Norris actioner provides a solidly calm performance, which is maybe his best or actually most suited. His beard is in full flight, but he also sports a gratuitous mullet and dangerous looking trench coat. It's definitively my favourite of those mainstream humdingers that he was chalking up through the measly 90s. Norris' brother Aaron (who directed Chuck in some other flicks) was in the director's chair and this would be his most accomplished piece. The premise is transparently black n white (if vague), but it's the calculatingly dark, risky and lean tone which I fancied. It kind of reminded me of J. Lee Thompson's "Death Wish 4: The Crackdown (1987)". Sure it can get over-sentimental with a flabby and pointless subplot involving a 'young nice boy' living next door to Norris. But this plot device (in a surprisingly story-bound presentation) gives Norris' character a humane element to counter-pouch that cold, fearless nature driving him to complete his job. Amongst this moral interruption, it can be rather offensively racist, mean-spirited and brutal in its staged barbaric violence that's broken out in the crime underworld. As double crossings, secret meetings and vicious set-ups plague the get-up. It doesn't really focus on Norris' martial arts abilities, as it doesn't get much of a show-in with him preferring to use his punishing shotgun. Get ready for a bloody onslaught with smarting wise-cracks! Aaron Norris' hardboiled direction is brisk, gritty and accordingly sombre in its grungy atmospheric charges leaking from such moodily shot-on locations. Some rousing suspense can be detected too. Joel Derouin's music score really does skew back to those saucily cruising, but uneasy jazz scores of the 70s. The support cast offer able assistance with their parts. Michael Parks memorably nasty, thuggery performance is a blast whenever his on screen.

An edgy, hard-hitting Norris entry that at least tries be something a little more different.

5 of 5 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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