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Silver Streak (1976)

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On a long-distance train trip, a man finds romance but also finds himself in danger of being killed, or at least pushed off the train.

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Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 3 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
... George
... Hilly
... Grover
... Devereau
... Sweet
... Sheriff Chauncey
... Mr. Whiney
... Professor Schreiner & Johnson
Len Birman ... Chief
... Plain Jane
... Rita Babtree
... Ralston
... Reace
... Jerry Jarvis
Delos V. Smith Jr. ... Burt (as Delos V. Smith)
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Storyline

A somewhat daffy book editor on a rail trip from Los Angeles to Chicago thinks that he sees a murdered man thrown from the train. When he can find no one who will believe him, he starts doing some investigating of his own. But all that accomplishes is to get the killer after him. Written by Alfred Jingle

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

train | murder | sidekick | police | book | See All (117) »

Taglines:

It's the Most Hilarious Suspense Ride of Your Life! See more »


Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

3 December 1976 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

El expreso de Chicago  »

Filming Locations:

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Box Office

Budget:

$6,500,000 (estimated)

Gross USA:

$51,079,064, 31 December 1977
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Westrex Recording System)

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Hilly Burns (Jill Clayburgh) was a Carole Lombard-type character. Clayburgh played Lombard in Gable and Lombard (1976). See more »

Goofs

When George is thrown from the Silver Streak, he is supposed to be somewhere in New Mexico. As he is walking the tracks, Joshua trees can be seen in the background. Joshua trees are native to the Mohave Desert region of California and some locations in Nevada and Arizona, there are no Joshua trees in New Mexico. See more »

Quotes

Sheriff Chauncey: Is he with the feds?
George Caldwell: Who?
Sheriff Chauncey: This guy Rembrandt.
George Caldwell: Rembrandt is dead.
Sheriff Chauncey: Dead? That makes four. Listen, fella, are you sure you're not making this up as you go along? I'm an officer of the law and I got a lot better things to do than listen to that kind of funnin'.
[buzzer sounds]
Sheriff Chauncey: That's my hotline. Now you take your time to get your facts straight 'cause when I come back I want your answers clear and to the point. Got that? And you can start with who shot Rembrandt!
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User Reviews

 
Masculinity in 1976
24 May 2006 | by See all my reviews

I saw this film in the cinema as a teenager when it came out. It was sold, I think, as a Hitchcock parody and I thought parodies were great. Gene Wilder was the star, that was one more reason for me to see it, as I had greatly enjoyed his performance in Mel Brooks' Young Frankenstein. Stuff like that attracted me much more than movies with Robert Redford or Charles Bronson who then were the big male heroes of the screen.

Now, a good 30 years later, I watched Silver Streak a second time. It is an unusual mixture of comedy, action thriller and disaster movie. Characters like the ones played by Wilder, Clayburgh or Pryor seem to have become extinct – in the movies, I mean. They just seem to be so ... ordinary and normal and also kind hearted. Everything about Silver Streak is so unpretentious, seeing it today that really was a kind of a revelation to me.

A lot of the movie deals with masculinity and the assertion of it. It all happens in a very relaxed manner. Nothing and nobody is taken too seriously, conquests are made without effort, failure is accepted with grace. In a strange way, this movie really represents a better, unattainable world. I doubt if someone like Gene Wilder wold make it as a movie star today – the public, it seems, needs the grimaces of Jim Carrey to be amused. Pity.

Come to think of it, in France they had a movie comedian who looked very similar to Wilder. His name was Pierre Richard and his fame reached its zenith at about the same time as Wilder's before fizzling out somewhere in the eighties, when the Stallones and Schwarzeneggers took over.

Silver Streak is an entertaining and – in a positive way - forgettable movie. It has a pleasant musical score by Henry Mancini, this great eclecticist of the 20th century. The older I'm getting the more I enjoy his music and respect his enormous body of work.


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