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The Osterman Weekend (1983)

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During the Cold War, a controversial television journalist is asked by the C.I.A. to persuade certain acquaintances, who are Soviet Agents of the Omega network, to defect.

Director:

Sam Peckinpah

Writers:

Robert Ludlum (novel), Ian Masters (adaptation) | 1 more credit »
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2 wins. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Rutger Hauer ... John Tanner
John Hurt ... Lawrence Fassett
Craig T. Nelson ... Bernard Osterman
Dennis Hopper ... Richard Tremayne
Chris Sarandon ... Joseph Cardone
Meg Foster ... Ali Tanner
Helen Shaver ... Virginia Tremayne
Cassie Yates ... Betty Cardone
Sandy McPeak ... Walter Stennings
Christopher Starr Christopher Starr ... Steve Tanner
Burt Lancaster ... Maxwell Danforth
Cheryl Carter Cheryl Carter ... Marcia Heller
John Bryson John Bryson ... Honeymoon Groom
Anne Haney ... Honeymoon Bride
Kristen Peckinpah Kristen Peckinpah ... Tremayne's Secretary
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Storyline

In this adaptation of the Robert Ludlum novel, the host of an investigative news program has been convinced by the C.I.A. that the friends and associates he's invited to weekend with him in the country are actually engaged in a nefarious conspiracy which threatens national security, Written by Keith Loh <loh@sfu.ca>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

...isolation, violence, slaughter See more »

Genres:

Action | Drama | Thriller

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

4 November 1983 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Das Osterman-Weekend See more »

Filming Locations:

Toronto, Ontario, Canada See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$6,500,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$301,129, 23 October 1983, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$6,486,797
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (director's cut)

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

Sam Peckinpah asked the producers to do re-write work on the script, and was given permission to do so, but after submission of his first few pages, the producers relented, and forbade Peckinpah from doing any more re-writes. See more »

Goofs

During the closing credits we can see that the soundtrack is released by a label that goes under the name of Varese Saraband. The name of the label is actually Varese Sarabande, with an e in the end of the second name. See more »

Quotes

Bernard Osterman: The truth is just a lie that hasn't been found out.
See more »

Alternate Versions

On the Anchor Bay DVD release there is a rough cut made by Sam Peckinpah which he made showed to the test audience. Because the majority of the audience walked out, from the imfamous sex between Fassett and his wife. The producer wanted Peckinpah to cut the scene out. Once he refuse to made the cuts, he got fired. Other scenes. 1) The sex scene is more extended and shot more wobbly to express how Fassett breaking point for revenge had started. 2) Delete scene of Osterman and Joe talking on the phone about their deal. 3) Extended scene of Virginia flirting with Dick on the phone. 4) There a deleted scene of John Tanner of having an affair with his director Marcia, there wakes up to find her dead. 5) The scene where Tanner and guest are arguing by the dinner table, in the theatrical cut Fassett switches on a Swiss ad, the Peckinpah's cut he has like a big image of Danforth. 6) Alterative ending is juxtapositioned between Tanner searching for his family and the TV studio. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Alpha to Omega: Exposing 'The Osterman Weekend' (2004) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Weak end to a legendary career.

"The Osterman Weekend" emits the feeling of a last gasp. What was an author's second novel later took this form of a director's last film. Sam Peckinpah was a good choice for directing, with film's like "The Wild Bunch" and "Pat Garrett and Billy the Kid" under his belt, Peckinpah wouldn't hesitate to show the grim world of betrayal and manipulation that Robert Ludlum showed through virtually everyone of his books. With spy films like the James Bond franchise being the most popular, this was the lesser seem side of that coin - the side that is less escapist adventure storytelling for boys.

However, the problems that Sam Peckinpah was going through at his last stages have noticeably affected the film. The intricate plot is there, but feels stitched together in parts, though that may very well be due the studio demanding re-editing work. The action is at times sloppy with very little of the mesmerizing details of Peckinpah's previous action sequences; a car crash even contains multiple repeats of the same angle and makes some disastrous continuity. The other action scenes are a notch or two better, but still far from what they could have been.

But, at least the plot and its many deceptions keep you guessing, right to the last shot. --- 6/10

BsCDb Classification: 13+ --- violence, sexual content


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