5.6/10
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13 user 8 critic

Hit List (1989)

A family man and a mob witness hunt for a hit-man who has mistakenly kidnapped the family man's son.

Director:

William Lustig

Writers:

Aubrey K. Rattan (story), John F. Goff (screenplay) (as John Goff) | 1 more credit »
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Photos

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Jan-Michael Vincent ... Jack Collins
Leo Rossi ... Frank DeSalvo
Lance Henriksen ... Chris Caleek
Charles Napier ... Tom Mitchum
Rip Torn ... Vic Luca
Harold Sylvester ... Brian Armstrong
Jere Burns ... Jared Riley
Harriet Hall Harriet Hall ... Sandy Collins
Ken Lerner ... Gravenstein
Jack Andreozzi ... Abe Fasio
Nick Barbaro Nick Barbaro ... Mario
Lou Bonacki Lou Bonacki ... Johnson
Barry Brenner ... Doctor
Geoff Brewer Geoff Brewer ... Brock
Richard E. Butler Richard E. Butler ... Wink
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Storyline

Gangster boss Vincent Luca shall appear in court to account for his crimes - but he has a man at the police who tells him names and locations of the witnesses, so he can kill them all - but one: In the last hit, the professional killer gets into the wrong house. When the owner Mark Collins comes home, he finds his pregnant wife unconscious in the kitchen, his friend dead in the living room and his son kidnapped. The police officer wants Luca to believe he has the real witness' son and sends Collins into prison. But he manages to escape and takes things into his own hands. Written by Tom Zoerner <Tom.Zoerner@informatik.uni-erlangen.de>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

The F.B.I. Had Him. The Mob Wants Him. Being Popular Can Be Deadly. See more »

Genres:

Action | Thriller

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Lance Henriksen was so devoted to his role that he called William Lustig up at midnight asking what kind of gun his character should use. The next day, they met at a deli in Studio City where Henriksen placed a Desert Eagle on the table. See more »

Goofs

Mobster Luca taunts Agent Mitchum at the curb of the Gran Jury steps; in frustration Mitchum shoots Luca in the chest. The bullets slam Luca's body against the white limousine. The sliding actor's back slowly reveals a large rectangular dye pack trailing beside his left arm. See more »

Quotes

Chris Caleek: His father?
[to Kenny]
Chris Caleek: You're not Frank DeSalvo's kid?
Jack Collins: No, he's *my* son.
Chris Caleek: Well, go 'head and shoot! I'll break his fuckin' neck anyway!
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Rewind This! (2013) See more »

Soundtracks

Bad News
Written by Robby Weaver and Rusty Weaver
(C) Burtus Publishing (EMI)
See more »

User Reviews

 
"This guy is going to be trouble".
7 August 2011 | by lost-in-limboSee all my reviews

Film-maker William Lustig had made a sleeper in the shape of "Relentless" in 1989, but also that year he did the worthwhile 80s low-budget revenge thriller "Hit List" which kind of went by unnoticed between the "Maniac Cop" features. A mafia boss Luca organises for his hit-man to get rid of a witness Frank who's under police custody, but the guy takes out the wrong people and kidnaps the wrong son. The husband Mark comes home to find his friend dead, his pregnant wife injured and his son gone. The FBI wants Luca to believe he has the witness's son, so their witness can testify, but this means putting Mark behind bars until that happens. Overhearing the plans, Mark flees and kidnaps Frank in the hope of tracking down his son.

"Hit List" is a gritty urban action thriller that is as systematic as you can get, but director Lustig does a competently slick job and the mouth-watering cast he had at his disposal simply aimed up. Jan-Michael Vincent, Lance Henriksen, Leo Rossi, Charles Napier, Rip Torn, Ken Learner and Harold Sylvester. Henriksen is ultimately unforgettable as the deadly hit-man, who also happens to be a shoe salesman by trade. Would you dare ask for a discount? Not when you see this guy in his grove. Vincent goes about things in very hardened manner and Rossi is in good form as the humorous wise-guy. An excellent Napier gives a crusty turn as the FBI agent and Torn gives his Mafia boss plenty of fire and weight. The cast are excellent and they needed to be, as the pulpy plot was too basic and somewhat unspectacular even with its calculative suspense and tough brutality (a shootout in a kid's laser zone, where everyone just goes about their business?!). It doesn't entirely go all-out, as the hardy script does take its time for the character's to some degree open up with a bit of drama. Lustig's taut style suited the inventively agile photography and the go-for-broke stunt-work and stunt-car driving provided some fatal excitement in its absurd climax.

"Hit List" is a gratuitously neat little action joint, which doesn't ask much of your time.

"Maybe it's your world, but it's my kid".


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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

3 March 1989 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Hell to Pay See more »

Filming Locations:

Los Angeles, California, USA

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Box Office

Budget:

$1,500,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$3,195, 5 March 1989

Gross USA:

$4,564

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$4,564
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Ultra Stereo

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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