6.1/10
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38 user 35 critic

Last Embrace (1979)

Harry breaks down and loses his job after his wife is assassinated - could it be his turn next ?

Director:

Jonathan Demme

Writers:

Murray Teigh Bloom (novel), David Shaber (screenplay)
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Roy Scheider ... Harry Hannan
Janet Margolin ... Ellie Fabian
John Glover ... Richard Peabody
Sam Levene ... Sam Urdell
Charles Napier ... Dave Quittle
Christopher Walken ... Eckart
Jacqueline Brookes Jacqueline Brookes ... Dr. Coopersmith
David Margulies ... Rabbi Josh Drexel
Andrew Duncan ... Bernie Meckler
Marcia Rodd ... Adrian
Gary Goetzman ... Tour Guide (as Gary Getzman)
Lou Gilbert Lou Gilbert ... Rabbi Jacobs
Mandy Patinkin ... First Commuter
Max Wright ... Second Commuter
Sandy McLeod Sandy McLeod ... Dorothy Hannan
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Storyline

When his wife is killed in a restaurant shoot-out, intelligence man Harry Hannan (Roy Scheider) has a breakdown and finds that his department doesn't want him back. Someone's trying to kill him and it could be them, though a cryptic Jewish death-threat suggests there's something else going on. His only ally seems to be mousy Ellie Fabian (Janet Margolin) who has managed to move into his New York apartment. Written by Jeremy Perkins <jwp@aber.ac.uk>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

It begins with an ancient warning. It ends at the edge of Niagara Falls. In between there are 5 murders. Solve the mystery. Or die trying. See more »


Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Official Sites:

MGM

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

4 May 1979 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Det sjette offer See more »

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Box Office

Gross USA:

$1,537,125
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

After appearing in this 1979 Hitchcockian homage, Roy Scheider would appear in another, Still of the Night (1982), just a few years later in 1982. See more »

Goofs

In the scene in the synagogue, Harry appears to be going through a register book when he finds his grandfather's name. Actually, he's reading a tractate of the Talmud, which is entirely in Aramaica and Hebrew - and he's holding it upside down. See more »

Quotes

Dave Quittle: [following Harry around tombstones until he's discovered] Harry, if I wanted you dead, do you think I'd be walking around here.
See more »

Connections

References Saboteur (1942) See more »

Soundtracks

The Forties
Music by Miklós Rózsa
Arranged by Joe Reisman
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Surprisingly Good,Cultish Hitchcockian Thriller
2 June 2006 | by BJJManchesterSee all my reviews

A very decent effort from director Jonathan Demme before he went on to better things,LAST EMBRACE is inevitably compared to the works of Alfred Hitchcock,with many scenes derivative from many of the master's most famous works(VERTIGO,THE MAN WHO KNEW TOO MUCH,STRANGERS ON A TRAIN,etc.),but this is actually an effective suspenser in it's own right,with an intriguing plot,good performances and an exciting finale.Roy Scheider plays a Secret Agent just released from care after suffering a breakdown after his wife was killed in a shootout in a restaurant.After finding a woman(Janet Margolin)who has moved into his flat,he begins to suspect someone is trying to kill him after sinister messages in Amharic keep turning up.

The film would've been more superior with more humour and better pacing,but nevertheless this isn't at all a bad Hitch imitation,with the bird imagery(a motif Hitchcock used frequently in his films)and a fine musical score by Miklos Rozsa(who had himself worked with Hitchcock on SPELLBOUND)adding to the atmosphere.The performances are fine,especially Ms Margolin,an undervalued and lovely actress who never quite made it to the top,making her character quite pitiable despite her actions.Her early death at the age of 50 in 1993 was indeed a sad loss for a film performer who deserved better.

LAST EMBRACE was made shortly before Hitchcock's death in 1980;one wonders did he ever see this film? If so,I think he would have quite enjoyed the homage on view,not great,but fairly respectful and entertaining.


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