6.7/10
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68 user 23 critic

Thunder Road (1958)

Approved | | Crime, Drama, Film-Noir | 10 May 1958 (USA)
A veteran comes home from the Korean War to the mountains and takes over the family moonshining business. He has to battle big-city gangsters who are trying to take over the business and the police who are trying to put him in prison.

Director:

Arthur Ripley

Writers:

James Atlee Phillips (screenplay), Walter Wise (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Robert Mitchum ... Lucas Doolin
Gene Barry ... Troy Barrett
Jacques Aubuchon ... Carl Kogan
Keely Smith ... Francie Wymore
Trevor Bardette ... Vernon Doolin
Sandra Knight ... Roxanna Ledbetter
James Mitchum ... Robin Doolin
Betsy Holt Betsy Holt ... Mary Barrett
Francis Koon Francis Koon ... Sarah Doolin
Randy Sparks Randy Sparks ... Guitarist
Mitchell Ryan ... Jed Moultrie
Peter Breck ... Stacey Gouge
Peter Hornsby Peter Hornsby ... Lucky - Kogan's Henchman
Jerry Hardin ... Niles Penland
Robert Porterfield Robert Porterfield ... Preacher
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Storyline

A veteran comes home from the Korean War to the mountains and takes over the family moonshining business. He has to battle big-city gangsters who are trying to take over the business and the police who are trying to put him in prison.

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

YOU'LL NEED SHOCK ABSORBERS! (original ad - all caps) See more »


Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

10 May 1958 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Jack O'Diamonds See more »

Filming Locations:

Asheville, North Carolina, USA

Company Credits

Production Co:

D.R.M. Productions See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Westrex Recording System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Near the beginning of the film, when Lucas' father is at the still, the calls of a whippoorwill are heard. See more »

Goofs

When Luke and Francie are sitting on a sofa, he has his right arm around her shoulder. In close-up her right hand is up, caressing his hand; after the cut to mid-shot, her right hand is holding a drink. See more »

Quotes

Vernon Doolin: [referring to Niles Penlands being ambushed] So it begins. Saw a corpse bird the other day, hadn't seen one in years, shoulda known it was an ill omen.
See more »

Connections

Featured in Invisible Invaders (1959) See more »

Soundtracks

The Whippoorwill
Composed by Robert Mitchum and Don Raye
Sung by Keely Smith
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Mountain man moves moonshine to Memphis.
15 December 2002 | by michaelRokeefeSee all my reviews

Arthur Ripley directs this cult classic crime/Noir. War vet Robert Mitchum returns home to ramrod the family moonshine business. This hard headed bootlegger takes on the Feds and the Mob while burning the roads in his whiskey laden hot rods. If that is not enough, he must keep his young brother(James Mitchum)from moving up from mechanic to driver in the family business and then there is the romancing of a Memphis chanteuse(Keely Smith). Also in the cast are Gene Barry, Sandra Knight and Jacques Aubuchon. Bob Mitchum produces, and takes partial writing credit plus writes songs for this evocative glimpse of southern culture. Mitchum also oversees his younger brother's film debut.

NOTE: It is said that Elvis Presley enjoyed this movie so much he memorized bad Bob's lines of the script.


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