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Thunderbolt and Lightfoot (1974)

R | | Comedy, Crime, Drama | 24 May 1974 (USA)
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With the help of an irreverent young sidekick, a bank robber gets his old gang back together to organize a daring new heist.

Director:

Michael Cimino

Writer:

Michael Cimino
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Popularity
996 ( 432)
Nominated for 1 Oscar. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Clint Eastwood ... Thunderbolt
Jeff Bridges ... Lightfoot
Geoffrey Lewis ... Eddie Goody
Catherine Bach ... Melody
Gary Busey ... Curly (as Garey Busey)
Jack Dodson ... Vault Manager
Eugene Elman Eugene Elman ... Tourist (as Gene Elman)
Burton Gilliam ... Welder
Roy Jenson ... Dunlop
Claudia Lennear Claudia Lennear ... Secretary
Bill McKinney ... Crazy Driver
Vic Tayback ... Mario Pinski
Dub Taylor ... Station Attendant
Gregory Walcott ... Used Car Salesman
Erica Hagen Erica Hagen ... Waitress
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Storyline

Seven years after a daring bank robbery involving an anti-tank gun used to blow open a vault, the robbery team temporarily puts aside their mutual suspicions to repeat the crime after they are unable to find the loot from the original heist, hidden behind a school chalkboard. The hardened artilleryman and his flippant, irresponsible young sidekick are the two wild cards in the deck of jokers. Written by <booda@datasync.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

HE HAS EXACTLY SEVEN MINUTES TO GET RICH QUICK! (original poster-ALL CAPS) See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Crime | Drama

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

24 May 1974 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Thunderbolt and Lightfoot See more »

Filming Locations:

Choteau, Montana, USA See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$2,200,000 (estimated)

Gross USA:

$25,000,000
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

The Malpaso Company See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.39 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Clint Eastwood did this movie because he wanted to make a road movie according to "American Rebel: The Life of Clint Eastwood" (2009) by Marc Eliot. See more »

Goofs

When Thunderbolt and Lightfoot are being chased by Leary and Goody, they run their car off an embankment. You can clearly see that the passenger (Eastwood) Thunderbolt is a dummy. See more »

Quotes

John Doherty: In small-town banks, they leave the telephone off the hook in the vault at night so the local operator can listen in.
Lightfoot: People walk into these banks with paper sacks, fill 'em with money and walk out. Anybody can do it.
John Doherty: Bullshit. The newest bank vaults have walls of reinforced concrete five feet thick, backed by six inches of steel. The vault door is stainless steel-faced. It's an inch and a half of cast steel, another 12 inches of burn-resisting steel, and another inch and a half of ...
[...]
See more »

Connections

Features The Merv Griffin Show (1962) See more »

Soundtracks

Where Do I Go from Here
Composed by Paul Williams
Performed by Paul Williams
See more »

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User Reviews

A fascinating character-based comedy drama masquerading as a buddy action movie.
12 March 2003 | by InfofreakSee all my reviews

I found 'Thunderbolt And Lightfoot' in the "action" section of my local video store, and a quick glance at the cover and blurb might make you think you're in for a buddy action comedy, like Eddie Murphy et al made in the 1980s and Jackie Chan is making now. This is not entirely correct. While it is essentially a buddy movie and there is "action" in it, it is much more character-driven and episodic than most movies in the genre, and has more in common with forgotten 1970s gems like 'Scarecrow' or 'Fat City', than your typical Clint Eastwood fare from this period. Michael Cimino, who co-wrote the ecological SF sleeper 'Silent Running', and wrote the first (and best) movie in Eastwood's 'Dirty Harry' series, debuts impressively as director here. Eastwood himself is very good as enigmatic thief Thunderbolt, even better is Jeff Bridges who steals the movie as his young protege Lightfoot. Some people dislike this movie because it appears to meander along for no particular reason, but I really enjoyed the interaction between Eastwood and Bridges, who really seem to be having a ball working together. The plot eventually comes together with a robbery involving the two and character actors George Kennedy ('Cool Hand Luke' and Eastwood regular Geoffrey Lewis ('The Way Of The Gun'). I still really wouldn't call this a caper movie (ala 'Rififi', 'The Killing', 'The Anderson Tapes', etc,etc.), it's not as straightforward as that. The robbery plot is almost an excuse for a bunch of enjoyable scenes between the actors, who are all excellent and really play off each other in an entertaining way. Also keep an eye out for bit parts by Gary Busey ('Big Wednesday'), Catherine Bach (Daisy Duke!), Dub Taylor ('The Wild Bunch') and others, especially an unforgettable bit with the legendary Bill McKinney ('Deliverance'), one of the highlights of the movie. There's no way I'm going to argue that 'Thunderbolt And Lightfoot' is a forgotten classic, but it is a lot of fun to watch, it is unpredictable and interesting and features some fine performances, and that is a lot more than you can say for most subsequent Hollywood movies of this type. Recommended to 1970s buffs and anyone who enjoys Jeff Bridges.


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