Bil’s rating (out of 5): BBBB.
USA, 1964. Revue Studios. Screenplay by Gene L. Coon, based on the story by Ernest Hemingway. Cinematography by Richard L. Rawlings. Produced by Don Siegel. Music by John Williams. Production Design by Frank Arrigo, George B. Chan. Costume Design by Helen Colvig. Film Editing by Richard Belding.
Don Siegel excitingly remakes the Robert Siodmak classic using Ernest Hemingway’s very short story as a base once again. This time the insurance investigator has been done away with, and instead it is the killers themselves who are the protagonists after hired hit men Lee Marvin and Clu Gulager follow instructions to do away with John Cassavetes and are amazed by how easy it is. Cassavetes doesn’t try to run and merely submits to his execution, which piques their curiousity and has the two men going from place to place to find out about his past as a race car driver and his love affair with gorgeous Angie Dickinson. Siegel’s version trades ripping energy and violence for the atmosphere of the previous one and is just as enjoyable, highlighted by Siegel’s efficient direction and the fantastic cast (which also includes Ronald Reagan).
The Criterion Collection: #176