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Author Topic: Thunderbolt and Lightfoot (1974)  (Read 5642 times)
Ben Tyreen
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« on: May 29, 2008, 10:48:23 AM »

Thunderbolt and Lightfoot (1974) 8/10  I agree with CJ's including this in a top 10 guy's guy movie.  Great cast with Eastwood, Bridges, George Kennedy and Geofrey Lewis and a who's who of 70s character actors.  The heist and all its preparations were exciting and very tense.  Downbeat ending, but it works for the movie.   Afro

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« Reply #1 on: October 21, 2009, 09:09:07 PM »

Thunderbolt and Lightfoot (1974) - 9/10. The best Cimino: an almost perfect heist tale, artfully told, with humor, pathos, and none of the pretentiousness that would characterize the director's later work. Wonderful location work in Idaho and Montana. Also a great cast of principals, with cameos by Dub Taylor, Catherine Bach, Vic Tayback, Gary Busey, and even Rickles (in a TV spot). It loses a point, though, for the awful Paul Williams song that comes in at the 10 minute mark, and which is then reprised for the end credits.

« Last Edit: March 13, 2016, 12:17:11 PM by dave jenkins » Logged


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« Reply #2 on: October 21, 2009, 09:21:07 PM »

I remember it being alright, entertaining enough and sometimes even funny, but this 9 must be a joke, bloke.

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« Reply #3 on: October 22, 2009, 06:00:00 AM »

Why a joke? It's got a great plot, characters that interact and change, great photography. It also captures the West of the early 70s very well, a place that no longer exists.

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« Reply #4 on: October 22, 2009, 07:29:22 AM »

I'd give it a 7\10 at best.

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« Reply #5 on: October 22, 2009, 08:42:04 AM »

I particularly like the way the plot unfolds. They don't get to the heist until after an hour has passed; in fact, we don't even know there's going to be a heist until then. The long preamble gives us the opportunity to get to know the characters and understand the relationships between them. Then there are all the weird things that happen that have little or nothing to do with the story: for example the guy with the rabbits in his trunk (he is a hoot!). And I love the bit where the car breaks down and you think they'll have to walk, but they're actually at a river landing and a boat comes that takes them up the Snake. Finally, after the heist has come off and we get the usual double-cross (but still, I think, uniquely presented) we re-set back to the situation in the first half of the movie, which we'd forgotten about until then, and get a couple of nifty pay-offs (one a literal one).

Just a fantastic piece of plot construction. And Cimino wrote it himself.

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« Reply #6 on: October 22, 2009, 09:11:21 AM »

I think I rated it already a few years back, something like 7 or 7.5 stars out of 10. I have it on tape somewhere, I might give it another try.

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« Reply #7 on: October 22, 2009, 01:38:30 PM »

Watched it and I give it a 7/10. It's as I remembered: entertaining enough and sometimes funny. The irony is that the heist, which is supposed to be the forte of a crime flick, turns out to be a laugher, while the first one hour of the nearly pointless foreplay redeems the whole movie, because it's entertaining. The episode with the Crazy Driver (played by the good ole Bill McKinney) is swell, and there's also another small episode that makes me laugh every time I see it (though I don't think it was intended to be funny) - when Thunderbolt and Lightfoot are sitting near the water drinking beer and eating apples. lol, apples and beer mix together like oil and yogurt, you can really tell by Clint's face it was a tough task to send it all down. Grin They probably had to pause the shooting of the movie for a week cause the guys had to recover physically and mentally. Grin

Also worth mentioning is that they had several prime babes in the movie.

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« Reply #8 on: October 22, 2009, 02:02:47 PM »

there's also another small episode that makes me laugh every time I see it (though I don't think it was intended to be funny) - when Thunderbolt and Lightfoot are sitting near the water drinking beer and eating apples. lol, apples and beer mix together like oil and yogurt, you can really tell by Clint's face it was a tough task to send it all down. Grin They probably had to pause the shooting of the movie for a week cause the guys had to recover physically and mentally. Grin
Thanks, I hadn't picked up on that. There are also a couple of moments of unintended gayness between Bridges and Eastwood that I find pretty funny. Or were those unintended? I know Cimino is partial to high-heeled cowboy boots.

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« Reply #9 on: October 22, 2009, 04:04:11 PM »

Quote
Why a joke? It's got a great plot, characters that interact and change, great photography. It also captures the West of the early 70s very well, a place that no longer exists.

Quote
I particularly like the way the plot unfolds. They don't get to the heist until after an hour has passed; in fact, we don't even know there's going to be a heist until then. The long preamble gives us the opportunity to get to know the characters and understand the relationships between them. Then there are all the weird things that happen that have little or nothing to do with the story: for example the guy with the rabbits in his trunk (he is a hoot!). And I love the bit where the car breaks down and you think they'll have to walk, but they're actually at a river landing and a boat comes that takes them up the Snake. Finally, after the heist has come off and we get the usual double-cross (but still, I think, uniquely presented) we re-set back to the situation in the first half of the movie, which we'd forgotten about until then, and get a couple of nifty pay-offs (one a literal one).

Just a fantastic piece of plot construction. And Cimino wrote it himself.

I wouldn't go quite as high as a 9 but being a 24 year resident of Montana it did capture that time period and its quirky Northwest atmo, Idaho, Washington, Oregon, all included , I think that fact is upping both dj's and my ratings, others not familiar with that place & time may not be influenced by that connection. I'll go 8.

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« Reply #10 on: October 22, 2009, 10:03:37 PM »

Thunderbolt and Lightfoot (1974) - 9/10. The best Cimino: an almost perfect heist tale, artfully told, with humor, pathos, and none of the pretentiousness that would characterize the director's later work. Wonderful location work in Idaho and Montana. Also a great cast of principals, with cameos by Dub Taylor, Catherine Bach, Vic Tayback, Gary Busey, and even Rickles (in a TV spot). It loses a point, though, for the awful Paul Williams song that comes in at the 10 minute mark, and which is then reprised for the end credits. http://www.hulu.com/watch/27801/thunderbolt-and-lightfoot

I have wanted to see this for a couple years now, thanks for posting the link, DJ. I'm a big fan of Year of the Dragon, so I'll see if this tops it.

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« Reply #11 on: June 16, 2010, 10:57:53 PM »

Thunderbolt and Lightfoot - 7-8/10 - A slightly-above-average caper film enhanced by a dynamite cast and a great script. The movie sags a lot in the middle but the acting and character interplay keep it worthwhile. Also the climactic car chase is excellent.

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« Reply #12 on: July 18, 2013, 04:59:20 AM »

The good, the bad and the ugly of the 1970īs?

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« Reply #13 on: July 18, 2013, 11:28:35 AM »

The good, the bad and the ugly of the 1970īs?

I wouldn't quite go that far, in GBU they are all equally dangerous.

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« Reply #14 on: July 18, 2013, 12:34:46 PM »

I wouldn't quite go that far, in GBU they are all equally dangerous.
Yeah, but what other 70s film would qualify?

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