5.6/10
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Messenger of Death (1988)

A Denver reporter investigates the mass murder of a family of Mormons in rural Colorado.

Director:

J. Lee Thompson

Writers:

Rex Burns (novel), Paul Jarrico (screenplay)
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Charles Bronson ... Garret Smith
Trish Van Devere ... Jastra Watson
Laurence Luckinbill ... Homer Foxx
Daniel Benzali ... Chief Barney Doyle
Marilyn Hassett ... Josephine Fabrizio
Charles Dierkop ... Orville Beecham
Jeff Corey ... Willis Beecham
John Ireland ... Zenas Beecham
Penny Peyser ... Trudy Pike
Gene Davis ... Junior Assassin
John Solari ... Senior Assassin
Jon Cedar ... Saul
Tom Everett ... Wiley
Duncan Gamble Duncan Gamble ... Lieutenant Scully
Bert Williams Bert Williams ... Sheriff Yates
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Storyline

Wifes and children of the Mormon Orville Beecham become victims of a massacre in his own house. The police believes the crime had a religious motive. Orville doesn't give any comment on the case, is taken into protective custody. Journalist Smith persuades him to help him in the investigation - and finds out about economic motives for the murder. Written by Tom Zoerner <Tom.Zoerner@informatik.uni-erlangen.de>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

What the cops can't do, he will.


Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Official Sites:

MGM

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

17 September 1988 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Avenging Angels See more »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$1,035,279, 18 September 1988, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$3,074,681
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (cut)

Sound Mix:

Ultra Stereo

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

This film is not the last Cannon Film that Charles Bronson did but the last one for The Cannon Group, Inc. since Kinjite: Forbidden Subjects (1989) was made by Cannon Entertainment. See more »

Goofs

During the car chase, Smith's car is on the inside of one of the tankers on the first corner out of the tunnel, but in the next shot it's back in the middle of both tankers. See more »

Quotes

Garret Smith: [punching the assassin] Bastard child killer!
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User Reviews

A Bronson-movie with a strong supporting cast
27 September 2003 | by Renaldo MatlinSee all my reviews

One of the things that bugs me most about the later Charles Bronson-movies is that so many of them flaunt a terrible supporting cast. Don't get me wrong, it's great to see Stephen Elliott ham it up as Bronson's boss in "Assassination" or Juan Fernandez as a creepy pimp in "Kinjite: Forbidden Subjects" but aside from one or two OK performances good old Charlie was too often surrounded by grade-C actors or good but uninspired actors, the last two decades of his career.

"Messenger of Death" however, is an exception.

Here the legendary action-hero is surrounded by the likes of Jeff Corey, Daniel Benzali, John Ireland, Charles Dierkop (Police Woman) and given likeable female support from Trish Van Devere. The story itself is just average, but certainly not as ludicrous as the paper-thin material in movies like "Assassination" and "Death Wish 4" and "5" and you know where I'm going.

British veteran director J. Lee-Thompson (Cape Fear, The Guns of Navarone) did an impressive nine movies with Bronson, and "Messenger of Death" was their 8th teaming. It opens with a horrifying scene where a large family is executed in cold blood (the entire scene is brilliantly done and much better than what one would expect from someone who just did "Death Wish 4" and "Firewalker"). The movie then delivers a lot of beautiful scenery, a smashing action-scene with some trucks and a likeable finale where the guilty party is unmasked.

Compared to most Bronson-fare at the time this is better-than-average, much thanks to the afore mentioned good supporting cast. But don't expect mindless vigilante action, Bronson plays a reporter but he still gets to kick some ass, and he does a nice job considering he was in his late sixties at the time.


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