6.5/10
810
14 user 1 critic

The California Kid (1974)

A deranged desert town sheriff has a murderous habit of forcing speeders to their deaths, until a young man with a souped-up hotrod arrives to possibly end it.

Director:

Richard T. Heffron

Writer:

Richard Compton
Reviews

On Disc

at Amazon

Photos

Learn more

More Like This 

Winter Kill (TV Movie 1974)
Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

A sniper is killing residents at a winter resort. Who will die next? And why?

Director: Jud Taylor
Stars: Andy Griffith, John Larch, Tim O'Connor
Death Sentence (TV Movie 1974)
Crime | Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.6/10 X  

A juror on a murder case begins to believe that the man on trial is innocent of the crime - and then discovers that the real killer is her own husband.

Director: E.W. Swackhamer
Stars: Cloris Leachman, Laurence Luckinbill, Nick Nolte
Never Let Go (1960)
Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

A cosmetic salesman sets out to prove to himself and his wife that he is not a failure.

Director: John Guillermin
Stars: Richard Todd, Peter Sellers, Elizabeth Sellars
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.5/10 X  

Two young men in a fast car travel through Georgia in the summer of 1958 en route to enter the National Championship drag races in California. In Macon County they pick up a wild girl who brings trouble and attract the ire of a local cop.

Director: Richard Compton
Stars: Nick Nolte, Don Johnson, Robin Mattson
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.1/10 X  

Bluff Jackson is a smooth talking drifter with a questionable past. His travels take him to an isolated backwoods station where two sisters, totally ignorant of the modern world, are caring for their elderly civil war veteran grandfather.

Director: Clyde Ware
Stars: Tillie Allen, Dick Barton, Jim Boles
Western
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

Marshal Wyatt Earp kills a couple of men of the Clanton gang in a fight. In revenge, Clanton's thugs kill the Marshal's brother. Thus, Wyatt starts to chase the killers together with his friend Doc Holliday.

Director: John Sturges
Stars: James Garner, Jason Robards, Robert Ryan
Horror
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  

A man who recently completed rebuilding a townhouse becomes obsessed with a rat infestation until it becomes an interspecies duel.

Director: George P. Cosmatos
Stars: Peter Weller, Jennifer Dale, Lawrence Dane
Eagle's Wing (1979)
Western
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.9/10 X  

A white trapper steals a white mustang called "Eagle Wing" from a Kiowa Indian, who pursues him to get his horse back.

Director: Anthony Harvey
Stars: Martin Sheen, Sam Waterston, Harvey Keitel
Crime | Drama | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

In the West Berlin of the 1960s, two British agents are killed by a Nazi group, prompting British Intelligence to dispatch agent Quiller to investigate.

Director: Michael Anderson
Stars: George Segal, Alec Guinness, Max von Sydow
Horror
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

A journalist takes a bet that he can spend the night in a haunted castle on All Hallow's Eve. During his stay, he bears witness to the castle's gruesome past coming to life before him, and falls in with a beautiful female ghost.

Directors: Sergio Corbucci, Antonio Margheriti
Stars: Barbara Steele, Georges Rivière, Margrete Robsahm
Pickup on 101 (1972)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

An elderly wanderer, a sexy young girl running away from home and a folk singer looking for stardom hitch-hike their way cross-country, trying to get to California.

Director: John Florea
Stars: Jack Albertson, Lesley Ann Warren, Martin Sheen
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Martin Sheen ... Michael McCord
Vic Morrow ... Sheriff Roy Childress
Michelle Phillips ... Maggie
Stuart Margolin ... Deputy
Nick Nolte ... Buzz Stafford
Janit Baldwin ... Sissy
Gary Morgan ... Lyle Stafford
Frederic Downs Frederic Downs ... Judge J.A. Hooker
Don Mantooth Don Mantooth ... Jack (as Donald Mantooth)
Joe Estevez ... Don McCord (as Joseph Estevez)
Britt Leach ... Johnny
Norman Bartold ... Howard
Barbara Collentine Barbara Collentine ... Edith
Michael Richardson ... Charley
Gavan O'Herlihy ... Tom
Edit

Storyline

A sadistic small-town sheriff has a habit of deliberately forcing speeders to their deaths on the mountain roads leading into town. The brother of one of the victims rolls into town in his hot rod to investigate his brother's death. Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

In this town a speeding ticket is a death sentence


Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »
Edit

Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

25 September 1974 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

California Kid See more »

Filming Locations:

Ojai, California, USA See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Universal Television See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See full technical specs »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

Joe Estevez, who played the sailor driving the car (Don McCord), is the real-life younger brother of Martin Sheen, who played Don's brother in the movie. See more »

Goofs

Clearly seen throughout the film is the black and gold California license plate on McCord's coupe. This type of plate was not issued until 1963. In addition, the serial prefix of the plate (WLA 285) is a 1967-68 series. See more »

Quotes

Sheriff Roy Childress: I want you out of this town today McCord.
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
Better Than Your Average Made For TV Movie
21 October 2013 | by Ed-ShullivanSee all my reviews

The executive producer Paul Mason was very fortunate to have acquired such a talented group of actors for this made for TV movie back in 1974. You won't get any better than Nick Nolte, Martin Sheen and Vic Morrow joining forces in this low budget movie. I quite enjoyed the drama and the action that The California Kid presented using the small town of Clarksberg as the back drop for the movie in 1958.

The Sheriff Roy Childress is played by Vic Morrow whose salary is drawn by how much the judge can fine the unsuspecting visitors who go over the posted speed limit even by 5 miles per hour. And if the speedsters try and avoid capture, well Vic Morrow just runs them off the cliff as they attempt to allude capture and make the state border.

A lot of the interaction takes place at the local town restaurant where the waitress Maggie played by Michelle Phillips serves the best hot coffee in town. Then one day a hot rodder named Michael McCord played by Martin Sheen comes driving in to town. We soon find out that Mr. McCord is not in town by accident, but seeking answers as to how is brother died falling over a cliff outside of town while driving with a friend.

Martin Sheen is such a super star that he can take a basic script and elevate the movie from a 2 star to a 4 star rating by himself. Adding to the star quality you have Nick Nolte as the local mechanic Buzz Stafford whose younger brother also recently died at the hands of the mean Sheriff Roy Childress.

The movie will keep you wishing for revenge for the young murder victims and that Sheriff Roy Childress will get his comeuppance. The late model 1950's circa cars ridden by Sheriff Roy and by Michael McCord are awesome to look at and watch during the speed racing scenes.

The epilogue leaves the fans with the feeling that justice has been served. How? Well you will just have to watch the movie for yourself. You won't be disappointed in this 1970's made for TV movie. Keep in mind that both Nick Nolte and Martin Sheen went on to the big screen and starred in some of the biggest box office movies over the next three decades. We were lucky to have them both on our television sets starring in The California Kid.


1 of 1 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 14 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page

Stream Trending Movies With Prime Video

Enjoy a night in with these popular movies available to stream now with Prime Video.

Start your free trial



Recently Viewed