In a decrepit South American village, four men are hired to transport an urgent nitroglycerine shipment without the equipment that would make it safe.

Writers:

Georges Arnaud (from the novel by), Henri-Georges Clouzot (adaptation) (as H.G. Clouzot) | 1 more credit »
Top Rated Movies #219 | Won 1 BAFTA Film Award. Another 5 wins. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Yves Montand ... Mario Livi
Charles Vanel ... M. Jo
Folco Lulli ... Luigi
Peter van Eyck ... Bimba (as Peter Van Eyck)
Véra Clouzot ... Linda (as Vera Clouzot)
William Tubbs William Tubbs ... Bill O'Brien
Darío Moreno ... Pepito Hernandez (as Dario Moreno)
Jo Dest Jo Dest ... Hans Smerloff
Antonio Centa ... Camp Chief (as Centa)
Luis De Lima Luis De Lima ... Bernardo
Grégoire Gromoff Grégoire Gromoff
Joseph Palau-Fabre Joseph Palau-Fabre
Faustini Faustini
Seguna Seguna
Darling Légitimus ... (as Miss Darling)
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Storyline

In the Central American jungle supplies of nitroglycerin are needed at a remote oil field. The oil company pays four men to deliver the supplies in two trucks. A tense rivalry develops between the two sets of drivers and on the rough remote roads the slightest jolt can result in death. Written by Col Needham <col@imdb.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

The film about recklessness, friendship, hatred, fear. See more »


Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Original novel: "Le salaire de la peur", written by Georges Arnaud, published by Julliard, Paris, October 1950, 203 pages. See more »

Goofs

In the scene after the destruction of the makeshift road, Luigi and his pal are shown driving the truck. The shadow of the siren above their truck cab does not change direction despite the driver clearly turning the truck through the hill road. See more »

Quotes

Dick: When I was a kid, I used to see men go off on this kind of jobs... and not come back. When they did, they were wrecks. Their hair had turned white and their hands were shaking like palsy! You don't know what fear is. But you'll see. It's catching, it's catching like small pox! And once you get it, it's for life! So long, boys, and good luck.
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Alternate Versions

The film was cut for U.S. distribution in 1954, in part due to scenes that denounced crooked U.S. business interests in Latin America. The Criterion Collection laserdisc restored the film to its uncut version with 21 minutes of footage removed from other versions of the film. See more »

Connections

Featured in Montand à la rencontre de Pagnol (1986) See more »

Soundtracks

Valentine
Music by Henri Christiné
Whistled by Yves Montand and Charles Vanel
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User Reviews

 
Stunning!! Completely Unique!
8 March 1999 | by Mick-81See all my reviews

A completely novel plot. Happened upon this on late night TV about 10 years ago. Thought I had seen all the best of the classics and then this came on. "Where have you been all my life?" was the overwhelming question. What an incredibly beautiful and stark movie at the same time. Absolutely unprecedented. Everything about it--especially the cinematography (check out the scene with the turnabout for the trucks) is superior. If you care about plot, allegory, intelligent directing and acting, this is one which is second to none. Nitroglycerine being transported across the Venezuelan countryside. . .who comes up with this stuff? The remake (Sorcerer) is decent, but doesn't even come close. Outstanding flick.


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Frequently Asked Questions

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Details

Country:

France | Italy

Language:

French | English | Spanish | German | Italian | Russian

Release Date:

16 February 1955 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Wages of Fear See more »

Filming Locations:

Poulx, Gard, France See more »

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Box Office

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$1,098
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Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (director's cut) | (director's cut) (2017 restoration)

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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