A hard but mediocre cop is assigned to escort a prostitute into custody from Las Vegas to Phoenix, so that she can testify in a mob trial. But a lot of people are literally betting that they won't make it into town alive.
As the film opens on an Oklahoma farm during the depression, two simultaneous visitors literally hit the Wagoneer home: a ruinous dust storm and a convertible crazily driven by Red, the ... See full summary »
In Phoenix, the alcoholic and mediocre detective Ben Shockley is assigned by the Chief Commissary Blakelock to bring the witness Gus Mally from Las Vegas for a minor trial. Shockley travels to Vegas and finds that Gus Mally is an aggressive and intelligent prostitute with a college degree and she tells him that the odds are against her showing up in court. Shockley learns that she will actually testify against a powerful mobster and the mafia is chasing them trying to kill them both. He calls Blakelock and request a police escort from Phoenix to protect them. But soon he discovers that someone is betraying him in the police department. Now, Shockley and Malley hijack a bus and Shockley welds thick steel plates and transforms the cabin in an armored bus trying to reach the Forum. But they will need to drive through a gauntlet of police officers armed with heavy weapons.Written by
Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Although Clint Eastwood and Sondra Locke had already been living together for two years, it wasn't until after the movie came out that public rumors of an offscreen romance began. Both were married to other people for façade purposes: Eastwood since 1953 to Margaret Neville, who he reportedly was never in love with or even attracted to; Locke since 1967 to Gordon Anderson, who would later testify in court that the marriage was never consummated. Prior to their becoming an item, and during their respective marriages, Eastwood and Locke had been in several long-term but unpublicized relationships. In Eastwood's case, some of those relationships included children that have never been acknowledged in the press. See more »
In the constable's car, there is a can of Tab sitting on the dash with the bar code side visible in all the head on shots. After Shockley and the constable return to the car from making the phone call the can of Tab is turned around to the front; easy to tell because the bar code box is missing and the Tab lettering is larger. See more »
Them fellers up there are gonna wonder why you bailed out. And I'm gonna tell 'em. You chose sides. Got yourself a little nookie and chose sides.
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A disclaimer at the end reads: "Law enforcement procedures depicted in this film do not necessarily represent those of any law enforcement agency mentioned herein." See more »
The Gauntlet is the second of six films that Clint Eastwood did with Sondra Locke, an amount that certainly qualifies them as a screen team of note. They were for 15 years a team off the screen as well.
The Gauntlet casts Locke as a hooker who is being subpoenaed as a witness in an organized crime case. She's in Las Vegas where if you'll recall prostitution is legal and apparently she's learned some interesting information. More interesting than she realizes because there are some people who want to make very certain she does not reach Phoenix where the Maricopa County District Attorney has her for a witness.
Assigned to the case is Clint Eastwood who is characterized by himself as a tired old time server of a cop. He's not by reputation with the Phoenix, PD a Harry Callahan. But to the regret of forces who want to see Locke dead and consider him an incompetent and expendable, Clint fools them all.
As a film The Gauntlet goes at a good clip and the suspense from the first attack against Eastwood and Locke does not let up for a second. The dialog between Eastwood and Locke is crisp and entertaining and the action sequences well staged. The two leads get good support from Pat Hingle as Eastwood's luckless partner and William Prince the corrupt Chief of the Phoenix PD.
I'm not sure whether Prince wants Locke dead for her testimony linking him to organized crime or for the fact she can testify to some alternate sexual practices he favors. Either way Prince is absolutely manic about making sure they never get to Phoenix alive.
For fans of Clint Eastwood, The Gauntlet is one of his best films, one of my favorites of his, and something not to be missed.
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