7.7/10
22,971
190 user 92 critic

The Taking of Pelham One Two Three (1974)

In New York, armed men hijack a subway car and demand a ransom for the passengers. Even if it's paid, how could they get away?

Director:

Joseph Sargent

Writers:

John Godey (novel), Peter Stone (screenplay)

On Disc

at Amazon

Nominated for 1 BAFTA Film Award. Another 2 nominations. See more awards »

Photos

Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Walter Matthau ... Police Lt. Zachary Garber
Robert Shaw ... Bernard Ryder aka Blue
Martin Balsam ... Harold Longman aka Green
Hector Elizondo ... Giuseppe Benvenuto aka Grey
Earl Hindman ... George Steever aka Brown
James Broderick ... Denny Doyle - Train Conductor
Dick O'Neill ... Frank Correll
Lee Wallace Lee Wallace ... Al - the Mayor of New York City
Tom Pedi ... Caz Dolowicz
Beatrice Winde Beatrice Winde ... Mrs. Jenkins
Jerry Stiller ... Police Lt. Rico Patrone
Nathan George ... Police Ptl. James
Rudy Bond Rudy Bond ... Phil - Police Commissioner
Kenneth McMillan ... Harry - Borough Commander (as Kenneth Mc Millan)
Doris Roberts ... Jessie - The Mayor's Wife
Edit

Storyline

Four seemingly-unrelated men board subway train Pelham 1:23 at successive stations. Mr. Blue, Mr. Green, Mr. Grey and Mr. Brown are heavily armed and overpower the motorman and novice conductor to take control of the train. Between stations they separate the front car from the remainder of the train, setting passengers in the back cars and the motorman free. The four demand $1 million ransom within exactly one hour for the remaining eighteen hostages, including the conductor. If their demands are not met in time or their directions are not followed precisely, they will begin to shoot hostages dead, one every minute the money is late. Wisecracking Lt. Zach Garber of the transit police ends up being the primary communicator between the hijackers and the authorities, which includes transit operations, his own police force, the NYPD, and the unpopular and currently flu ridden mayor who will make the ultimate decision of whether to pay the ransom. Unknown to Garber, what may be working on ... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Before this train reaches the next station it will become the scene of the most spectacular hijack ever attempted See more »

Genres:

Action | Crime | Thriller

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
Edit

Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English | Spanish

Release Date:

14 November 1974 (West Germany) See more »

Also Known As:

Pelham See more »

Edit

Box Office

Budget:

$5,000,000 (estimated)

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$18,700,000, 31 December 1974
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

At least five people connected with this film are (or were) related to a notable person. Walter Matthau was the stepfather of Lucy Saroyan. Jerry Stiller is the father of actor Ben Stiller. Carol Cole was the sister of singer Natalie Cole. James Broderick was the father of Matthew Broderick. Composer David Shire was the husband of actress Talia Shire. See more »

Goofs

Subway signaling displays do not show trains in a manner that allows their length to be continuously observed by counting the lit dots. See more »

Quotes

Lt. Garber: Did you get that list of motormen who were discharged for cause I asked you to get?
Lt. Rico Patrone: Yeah - 78 names.
Lt. Garber: Seventy-eight?
Lt. Rico Patrone: Yeah, but it's not that bad. Eight are dead, 22 were rehired, eleven are in jail, 26 moved away, one's in a mental institution, and another's a member of the New York Police Department.
Lt. Garber: That's our man right there.
Lt. Rico Patrone: Sorry to disappoint you, Zachary, but he was accounted for.
See more »

Crazy Credits

Although many of the scenes in this film were taken on transit property, the New York City Transit Authority is not responsible for plot, story and characters portrayed. The Authority did not render technical advice and assistance. See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more »

User Reviews

 
The best heist film of all time!!!
14 April 2001 | by AntiknownSee all my reviews

A group of heavily armed men, all wearing the same disguises board a subway train underneath the streets of New York. They quickly take over the train and hold seventeen passengers hostage. They look and talk like professionals. They use codenames. Their ransom demand is One Million Dollars. Are these just maniacs without a plan? And if they do have a plan, how are they all going to escape alive while the world watches?

Right away, this film grabs you and doesn't let go. Every character plays their role remakably and memorably. Enough suspense to keep you chewing your nails until they are stubs...and most of all, a realistic and engrossing storyline. You will literally be on the edge of your seat, wondering where the next plot twist will take you.

You can easily see where Quentin Tarantino borrowed ideas from this movie to make Reservoir Dogs...and in my opinion, this film makes Reservior Dogs look like a second rate film. Its truly a shame most people aren't familiar with this movie and it doesn't have the allure or big star power to draw in new fans seeking out a great film to watch

If you happen to run across The Taking Of Pelham One Two Three though, do not pass it up! This is honestly the best heist movie I've ever seen. 10 out of 10 Rating.


56 of 63 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 190 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page



Recently Viewed