6.3/10
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15 user 6 critic

Act of Vengeance (1986)

In 1969, an administrator runs against the corrupt president of the United Coal Miners Union, and becomes the target of a murder plot.

Director:

John Mackenzie

Writers:

Trevor Armbrister (book), Scott Spencer (screenplay)
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4 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Charles Bronson ... Joseph 'Jock' Yablonski
Ellen Burstyn ... Margaret Yablonski
Wilford Brimley ... Tony Boyle
Hoyt Axton ... Silous Huddleston
Robert Schenkkan ... Paul Gilly
Ellen Barkin ... Annette Gilly
Maury Chaykin ... Claude Vealey
Caroline Kava ... Charlotte Yablonski
Peg Murray Peg Murray ... Ellen Rogers
William Newman ... Ezra Morgan
Alan North ... Albert Pass
Raynor Scheine ... Terrance Madden
Tom Harvey Tom Harvey ... Warren Alexander
Alf Humphreys ... Ken Yablonski
Joseph Kell ... Chip Yablonski
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Storyline

Fact-based story about the corruption that occurred during the United Mine Workers' 1969 presidential elections. Jock Yablonski was a loyal follower of then chief Tony Boyle. That all changed after 80 men are killed in an unsafe West Virginia coal mine and Boyle defended the mine owners. At his wife's urging and in fear of his life, Yablonski launched his campaign. And in fact, he became the target of assassins. Written by John Sacksteder <jsackste@bellsouth.net>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

His was an act of defiance. Theirs was an act of vengeance.

Genres:

Biography | Crime | Drama

Certificate:

PG-13 | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

21 April 1986 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

A hatalom megfizet See more »

Filming Locations:

Nemacolin, Pennsylvania, USA See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

One of three feature film collaborations of star Charles Bronson and actor Wilford Brimley. The movies are Borderline (1980), 10 to Midnight (1983), and Act of Vengeance (1986), with the latter being the only one being made-for-television. See more »

Quotes

Buddy Martin: When we get to Charleston they have this place where the girls let you... Well, did you ever put your hand... I mean, your whole Freaking hand inside a lady?
Claude Vealey: What? Put your hand inside a lady? Hell, I SHOT my old lady and she didn't even press charges.
See more »

Connections

Features A Tale of Two Kitties (1942) See more »

Soundtracks

Working For The Company
Written by Frankie Miller
Performed By Frankie Miller
See more »

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User Reviews

 
When power and pride rears its ugly head.
13 June 2009 | by lost-in-limboSee all my reviews

Bronson a union leader?! Yep, he's running for the job as president of the United Mines Union, due to the poor state of the party's image. But he finds it's not going to be easy, as president Tony Boyle (a larger than life Wilford Brimley) will pull out all punches (all) to rid them of the honorable union organizer Jock Yablonski who has the safety of his workers on mind, than say money.

This Bronson outing (made-for-TV) is far away from what he was constantly working in through the 80s, and stemming from this inspired true story (set in 1969) is a confronting drama defying the odds being fuelled by intense confrontations, inner conflict, devious interests, embezzlement and cold-blooded murder. Its power comes from Bronson's hearty turn, an admirable Ellen Burstyn and a credibly concise script. It remains captivating throughout, holding an agreeable amount of momentum in suspense and intrigue through the campaign, although it won't hold much surprises and the conclusion feels a little short-changed after the stinging climax.

The sub-plot involving the hired assassins (Robert Schenkkan leading the way) feels at times clumsy and drawn out (mainly due to these people not being professionals), but there's something unnerving lurking underneath it all. Plus Keanu Reeves shows up as one of the killers, and is actually rather good in a minor part.

Director John MacKenzie lets the story unfold slowly, but manages a tight and focused grip in a conservative style. Plain for some, but well measured for others. Nothing truly stands out (film-making wise from the music to cinematography), but it works in with the tactically stern frame it went for.

Committed handling throughout.


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