7.4/10
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Blow Out (1981)

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A movie sound recordist accidentally records the evidence that proves that a car accident was actually murder and consequently finds himself in danger.

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4,878 ( 328)
2 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
... Jack
... Sally
... Burke
... Manny Karp
Peter Boyden ... Sam
Curt May ... Donahue
John Aquino ... Detective Mackey
... Lawrence Henry
Deborah Everton ... Hooker
... Detective at Hospital
Missy Cleveland ... Coed Lover (as Amanda Cleveland)
... Coed Lover
Lori-Nan Engler ... Sue
Cindy Manion ... Dancing Coed
Missy Crutchfield ... Dancing Coed (as Missy O'Shea)
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Storyline

This stylish Brian De Palma thriller plays off the theme of the unsuspecting witness who discovers a crime and is thereby put in grave danger, but with a novel twist. Jack Terry is a master sound recordist who works on grade-B horror movies. Late one evening, he is recording sounds for use in his movies when he hears something unexpected through his sound equipment and records it. Curiosity gets the better of him when the media become involved, and he begins to unravel the pieces of a nefarious conspiracy. As he struggles to survive against his shadowy enemies and expose the truth, he does not know whom he can trust. Written by Tad Dibbern <DIBBERN_D@a1.mscf.upenn.edu>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Murder has a sound all of its own! See more »

Genres:

Mystery | Thriller

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Official Sites:

MGM

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

24 July 1981 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Personal Effects  »

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Box Office

Budget:

$18,000,000 (estimated)

Gross USA:

$13,747,234, 28 August 1981
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.39 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Nancy Allen envisioned the character of Sally as a little rag doll. See more »

Goofs

As the Burke character (John Lithgow) speaks to his contact from the "secure" public phone in downtown Philadelphia, the same maroon MGB convertible is seen directly across in the same metered space throughout the conversations that take place on different days. See more »

Quotes

Jack Terry: Jesus, that's terrible.
Mixer: That's a terrible scream. Jack, what cat did you have to strangle to get that?
Jack Terry: The one you hired. That's her scream.
Mixer: You mean you didn't dub that?
See more »

Connections

Featured in De Palma (2015) See more »

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User Reviews

 
If you liked F/X...
4 April 2004 | by See all my reviews

If you liked F/X, you'll probably like Blow Out and vice versa because both films involve a person who uses their craft to solve a highly corrupt case of murder.

While F/X's Rollie Tyler was a special effects engineer, our hero in Blow Out is a sound technician who must piece together parts of a sound recording (along with some other vital information from other sources along the way) to solve the murder of the gubernatorial candidate, a death which the police have written off as a homocide. Travolta employs Nancy Allen's help, a rather dumb prostitute who was in the car with the victim when their car ran off the bridge, but who is the only survivor and essential key to unlocking the mystery. They are dealing with a very relentless killer who will stop at nothing to make sure the trail of evidence leading to him is eliminated.

It is a typical DePalma movie in that it is done with many Hitchcock elements (they didn't call him the master of suspense for nothing) and also that he works with movies-in-a-movie (see 'Body Double' and 'Dressed to Kill'). It is an enjoyable crime and mystery movie in the days when John Travolta movies were still fun to watch.


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