San Francisco Police Lieutenant Bullitt's tasked by ambitious Walter Chalmers, to guard Johnny Ross, a Chicago mobster who's about to turn evidence against the organisation. Chalmers wants Ross' safety at all cost, or else Bullitt will pay the consequences.Written by
"BULLITT comes to this theatre soon. That ought to shake up the place pretty good. Not many freaky cops like BULLITT around. You look at the Italian shoes and the turtleneck and you have to wonder. You listen to the official beefs about 'personal misconduct', 'disruptive influence', you figure he's got to be up for trade. But when some rare Chicago blood starts spilling in San Francisco, they give BULLITT the mop. They weren't exactly doing him a favour. But they've done a great big one for you" See more »
After Steve McQueen lost control of his car and smashed into a parked vehicle, his then-wife Neile Adams begged Peter Yates to use stuntmen. So when McQueen reported for duty to find stuntman Bud Ekins sitting in his car, dressed as McQueen, he was furious. See more »
During the chase sequence, the same green Volkswagen Beetle is seen at least 4 different times in 4 different locations in a period of not more than 1 minute. See more »
[after much patient pressure, the desk clerk has finally offered up some details]
Am I helping you, sir?
I never had it so good.
See more »
During the car chase, when the Charger goes wide on a corner and hits a camera, the film was salvaged and red frames added at the end, to give a "point of impact" impression. Despite this gag being in situ for decades, on the current Cinemax Asia print, someone has seen fit to completely remove these last frames of the shot. See more »
This movie is a great example of how style can prevail over substance in a film. The story is straight-forward enough, but nothing outstanding - Det. Bullitt is assigned to protect a witness who will testify against the mob. He must protect him for about 40 hours, but somehow, hitmen discover the location of the witness and gun him down before he can testify. Then Bullitt must find the hitmen, as well as deal with an identity twist concerning the witness.
However, the music score, tight direction, the car chase, McQueen's performance, and especially Robert Vaughn's performance as a ruthless politician make "Bullitt" worth watching. In fact the performances are excellent all the way through the cast (with the exception of Jacqueline Bisset, who's there only for eye candy and brings nothing special to her role).
Of course, the car chase is the most famous aspect of the film. Simply put, it's the best car chase ever filmed, bar none. It's been copied, and with today's technology, should have been exceeded. Yet it still stands alone. Why?
First, the presence of Steve McQueen - who else could bring it off as well as he did? Second, the era it came from, the late 60's. Films in those days didn't have chases, so it set the standard. There's no camera tricks or special effects to screw it up, what you see is what you get. It's just wouldn't be the same if one of today's big stars got in his BMW to chase another guy in a Porsche, complete with special effects, the obligatory explosions and slow-motion techniques.
If you've never seen it, watch it. If you have seen it, it still holds up after repeated viewings. 9 out of 10.
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