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The Professionals (1966)

An arrogant Texas millionaire hires four adventurers to rescue his kidnapped wife from a notorious Mexican bandit.

Director:

Richard Brooks

Writers:

Frank O'Rourke (novel), Richard Brooks (written for the screen by)
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Popularity
3,707 ( 3,820)

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Nominated for 3 Oscars. Another 3 wins & 5 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Burt Lancaster ... Dolworth
Lee Marvin ... Fardan
Robert Ryan ... Ehrengard
Woody Strode ... Jake
Jack Palance ... Raza
Claudia Cardinale ... Maria
Ralph Bellamy ... Grant
Joe De Santis ... Ortega
Rafael Bertrand Rafael Bertrand ... Fierro
Jorge Martínez de Hoyos ... Padillia
Marie Gomez ... Chiquita
José Chávez José Chávez ... Revolutionary (as Jose Chavez)
Carlos Romero Carlos Romero ... Revolutionary
Vaughn Taylor ... Banker
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Storyline

A rich Texan, J.W. Grant, selects three men and invites them to his private train to offer them a contract: Rescue his wife who has been kidnapped by a Mexican revolutionary. The leader of the men, Rico, decides they would be a better team if Grant would hire one more man, an explosives expert. Grant quickly agrees and soon the four are off to complete the contract. However, while on the trail, they discover some interesting facts, like has Mrs. Grant 'really' been kidnapped? Written by AzRanger

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

It Captures The Flavor Of A Brawling Lusty Mexico! See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for violence and nudity | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English | Spanish

Release Date:

13 December 1966 (France) See more »

Also Known As:

Die gefürchteten Vier See more »

Filming Locations:

Bavispe, Sonora, Mexico See more »

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Box Office

Gross USA:

$19,537,346
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

4-Track Stereo (Western Electric Recording)| Mono

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

In his book, "Lee Marvin: Point Blank", author Dwayne Epstein describes Richard Brooks as an old fashioned, screaming director who drove his cast and crew to exhaustion, causing them to blow off steam at night when they got back to their Las Vegas hotel. Lee Marvin and Woody Strode created legendary debauches in the casinos, but still managed to perform the next day. No matter what they'd been up to the night before, Marvin was a total professional by the time they arrived on the set the next day. According to Strode, "I saw it when we'd drive to the set. He'd study the dialogue, and by the time we got to the set, he got it all in his head. He'd say, 'Now watch me make Burt blow all his lines'. Burt's been up all night studying and going through the regular routine an actor would go through. Lee didn't do that. Guy was gifted." See more »

Goofs

Joe Grant states, while reading the biographies of the Professionals, that Fardan left Pancho Villa's forces in June 1915 and spent a year prospecting fruitlessly. Later, however, at the camp at the old church, after Dolworth states that he joined the Mexican revolution in 1911, Maria Grant states that no man was more loyal to the revolution than Fardan and that he and Dolworth stayed and fought for six years, implying that Fardan did not leave Villa until 1917. As Raza's lover and confidante, Maria should have known that Fardan (and Dolworth) were long gone from the revolution by 1917. See more »

Quotes

Bill Dolworth: Relax. The stuff you're handling is safe. These beaded sticks are the tricky ones. It's the heat. Makes 'em sweat. Nitro. When they're dry and cool, they're safe and obedient. We'll leave these sweaty ones behind. Ventilate 'em. Cool 'em. Then maybe they'll behave.
Jake Sharp: Right now, I don't know if it's me or the dynamite that doin' all that sweatin'.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in The Story of Eloise (1976) See more »

Soundtracks

Chiquita's Dance
Written and Performed by Orchestra Maurice Jarre
See more »

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User Reviews

 
The Damned Bunch.
25 November 2011 | by bobsgrockSee all my reviews

Though not as perceptively grim in tone and style as Sam Peckinpah's epitaph The Wild Bunch, Richard Brook's The Professionals almost certainly inspired the former and was also one of the last great westerns Hollywood ever produced. Made at a time when the 'classical' era was waning, Brooks went entirely nostalgic, creating a story about John Wayne-like characters completely loyal to their cause but also flawed in many ways.

The cast is superb. The exotic beauty of Claudia Cardinale is great fodder for the main cast of Burt Lancaster, Lee Marvin, Robert Ryan and Woody Strode. Although Ryan and Strode have considerably less screen time, the relationship between Lancaster and Marvin is terrifically fleshed out along with Brooks' steady hand guiding the entire process of four men on the hunt to rescue a millionaire's kidnapped wife only to realize all is not as it seems.

Despite the fact that this film will forever be compared to the ones it inspired like The Wild Bunch or The Dirty Dozen, it should be admired on its own terms. It is a very entertaining and satisfying film with solid writing, acting, directing and editing along with some stunning cinematography of the American southwest. Compared to today's films, who could ask for anything more?


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