Marshal O'Niel's assigned to a mining colony on Io, one of Jupiter's moons. He soon encounters miners who are dying, due to use of an illegal amphetamine. O'Niel follows the trail, and now O'Niel must watch his back, as he's now their target.Written by
Writer-director Peter Hyams handled the cinematography for most of this movie. Stephen Goldblatt was misleadingly hired by Hyams, who only wanted him to stand aside and do nothing, and to use him as a scapegoat for the production company in case anything went wrong while using the IntroVision process. According to Goldblatt, he was furious at being lied to and wouldn't have taken the job if he'd known Hyams' intentions at the outset. He stayed on in order to learn how to use IntroVision, and because as a young cinematographer with a sole prior feature credit, quitting a movie could have ruined his career. It is the only one of his movies whose wrap party he skipped. See more »
Several times during the first half hour of the movie, O'Niel's uniform name tag changes spelling from "O'Niel" to "O'Neil" and back again. See more »
Some cupcake - name, uh, Cane - decided he didn't need an environment suit. They're still spongin' him off the elevator walls.
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Plot In A Paragraph: Marshall O'Neil (Connery) stationed at a remote mining colony on the Jupiter moon of Io uncovers a drug-smuggling conspiracy, and gets no help from the people there, when he finds himself marked for death.
I still vividly remember watching this with my dad, the night he rented it on video. It was the first Connery movie I had watched since Diamonds Are Forever. As nothing he made in between that time interested either of my parents for them to rent the video or watch it on TV.
Essentially this is High Noon in space. A heavily tanned Connery is the new Marshal who does what a man must do. There are a number of parallels. Killers are on their way to kill the Marshal, who is abandoned abandoned by his deputies, and with none of the residents willing to stand by his side. As the arrival time approaches, Connery enters the cafeteria/saloon and speaks to the townspeople, repeating the classic Cooper line, "I could use a little help," receiving none. He must decide between fleeing and joining his wife and son, or staying and facing almost certain death.
Away from the parallels of High Noon, the plot here is an intriguing one, The miners were being given an illegal drug, which increased their output for 11 months and then drove them insane. Connery actually delivers a good performance, that seems to have been forgotten about by the masses, which is a shame as it still holds up today, and Connery does some great acting in a scene where he doesn't utter a line of dialogue, as he watches a video of his wife. Connery was not happy at this movie going over schedule, as he lost a major extended cameo role in Chariots of Fire due to it.
All in all, I find Outland to be an enjoyable movie, with good pacing and a good atmosphere, that I usually watch every couple of years.
Outland did fair business for a Connery non Bond movie grossing $17 million at the domestic box office. Slightly more than its $16 million budget.
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