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Two-Minute Warning (1976)

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A crazed sniper is set to kill spectators at an L.A. Coliseum football championship game and the police races against time to eliminate him.

Director:

Larry Peerce

Writers:

George LaFountaine (novel) (as George La Fountaine), Edward Hume (screenplay)
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Nominated for 1 Oscar. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Charlton Heston ... Capt. Peter Holly
John Cassavetes ... Sgt. Button
Martin Balsam ... Sam McKeever
Beau Bridges ... Mike Ramsay
Marilyn Hassett ... Lucy
David Janssen ... Steve
Jack Klugman ... Sandman
Gena Rowlands ... Janet
Walter Pidgeon ... The Pickpocket
Brock Peters ... Paul
David Groh ... Al
Mitchell Ryan ... The Priest
Joe Kapp ... Charlie Tyler
Pamela Bellwood ... Peggy Ramsay
Jon Korkes ... Jeffrey
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Storyline

A psychotic sniper plans a massive killing spree in a Los Angeles football stadium during a major championship game. The police, led by Captain Peter Holly and SWAT commander Sergeant Button, learn of the plot and rush to the scene. Written by Tim Tompkins <homerjer@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

91,000 people. 33 exit gates. One Sniper... See more »


Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

12 November 1976 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Pánico en el estadio See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$6,700,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

|

Sound Mix:

Mono (Westrex Recording System)

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The movie was Oscar nominated for an Academy Award for Best Film Editing in 1977 but it lost out to Rocky (1976). See more »

Goofs

When Pratt, the SWAT team member, is climbing up to the stadium lights platform, he is first shown in a long shot climbing up the fixed rung ladder attached to the platform's support pole. A close-up then shows Pratt climbing up the steel extension ladder that he used a moment before to ascend to the support pole. A wide shot then shows him ascending the fixed rung ladder on the support pole again. See more »

Quotes

Mr. Green: You listen. I just hope you pick the right team today, Stu, because if I don't get that 28 G's in my pocket before sundown, you're going to take another trip out the window. And next time, nobody holds the ankles. You got it?
See more »

Alternate Versions

The network-TV version was cut 45 minutes shorter, keeping the 30-minute robbery plot but losing almost half the length of the original plot. This version is the most often one shown on broadcast TV in the USA. See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
Undervalued thriller.
18 September 2008 | by SpikeopathSee all my reviews

A lone gunman has his sights set on a sell-out crowd at a championship football game. Captain Peter Holly leads the desperate fight to try and stop the maniac from picking people off at will. Perched high on top of of the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum, the gunman has his pick of the targets, the Mayor-the President-or merely the innocent? Either way he has to be stopped before all hell breaks loose.

Much like Roller-coaster a year later, Two-Minute Warning is wrongly lumped in with the disaster movie genre that flooded the 1970s, and just like Roller-coaster, Two-Minute Warning is an excellently taut thriller. The build up is paced to precision, all characters are introduced to us to give us something to associate with should things go very wrong. As this is happening we get little POV snippets of our killer, accompanied by Charles Fox's harshly impacting music, the killer is never seen but we feel the dread, the impending sense of murder is a constant presence.

Once we are at the game and the authorities are aware that a sniper is on the roof, the film shifts up a gear and lays on the suspense thick and heavy. Captain Holly {Charlton Heston} is joined by the SWAT team, led by the cool and serious Sgt. Chris Button {John Cassavetes}, whilst stadium security manager Sam McKeever {Martin Balsam} prays that disaster can be averted. Then the final third of the picture is a ripper-heart pounding stuff, a final third that rewards the viewers patience for having invested in the film and its characters. Filling out the cast is Gena Rowlands, Jack Klugman {brilliant interplay with Mitch Ryan's priest}, Beau Bridges, Walter Pidgeon and David Jansen. Two-Minute Warning is a quality thriller that is sadly undervalued on the IMDb site, go on, give it a go and you might just be pleasantly surprised. 7.5/10

Footnote: I should point out that my thoughts are on the original unedited cut of this film, I have never seen the watered down TV cut and have no plans to ever do so.


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