Complete list of the films Guillermo del Toro has recommended on twitter. Click the 'Read notes' button to see his…
Fear is the driving force.
Travelling businessman, David Mann, angers the driver of a rusty tanker whilst crossing the Californian desert. A simple trip turns deadly as Mann struggles to stay on the road while the tanker plays cat and mouse with his life.
Steven Spielberg's feature film debut is a highly underrated masterpiece which presents the master director making remarkable use of his talent, creativity & passion for filmmaking to craft a mystery-thriller that remains nail-bitingly tense from start to finish and is the first entry in what would later become one of the most celebrated film careers of all time.
Initially conceived as a TV film & later turned into a full-length theatrical, Duel concerns a business commuter who is stalked & terrorized by a psychotic truck driver throughout the Californian desert highway for no specified reasons. The story is mostly narrated visually & makes minimal use of dialogues or music yet there is an eerie atmosphere it retains throughout its runtime which is brilliantly executed.…
Duel is probably the most literal example of "nightmare fuel" I have ever seen.
Despite the TV movie limitations, Steven Spielberg has managed to convey an illogical yet completely visceral thriller better than most filmmakers today. And considering that this is widely recognized as his feature debut, that's even more impressive. The masterful editing, carefully planned shots, and insane premise create an engulfing atmosphere that only gets more tense as it goes along. Not to mention, the fact we never see the truck driver adds a sense of mystery to the proceedings, therefore placing the audience in the same point of view as our protagonist.
Watching this, I got the impression that Spielberg wanted to create the perfect picture of…
Welcome to the begining of Arielrocks5's "The Months Of Spielberg" marathon!
(See the full list right here: letterboxd.com/arielrocks5/list/the-months-of-spielberg/)
Today, we have what many would consider his first feature, "Duel". A made for TV film that actually was so impressive at it's time, it even got a small theatrical release.
Basic premise is about a man on his way for something ends up being stalked by a crazy truck driver that starts out as playfully moving in his way on the highway, to then trying to run him over. Now he has to ether outrun him or end up becoming road kill.
And that's it. Just two guys in cars driving for an hour and twenty minutes. And what makes it…
I'd like to report a truck driver who's been endangering my life.
Duel is a travelers worst nightmare.
Sure you can get caught by a murderous band of backwoods cannibals, but at least you have a chance to escape.
One of my worst nightmares is one that involves me being pursued relentlessly by an unstoppable enemy without anyone else to help. I mean nightmares in a literal sense.
I've had that nightmare before.
It was called Terminator.
But seriously, there is just something so dreadful and tense about a chase that will never end. The situation breathes urgency and wits into the characters and gives them a fight for their life that only exists in films. This is a scenario…
Steven Spielberg's directorial debut is, surprisingly, one of his best films. Based on a short story, this made for TV film actually got a limited theatrical release when it was made as well, and has recently hit blu-ray, and I must say that the transfer is stunning. Being a TV movie, the film is actually changed from its original 1.33:1 aspect ratio to the modern 1.85:1 ratio, making it look more like a natural modern television program for modern widescreen TVs. The HD quality really makes the film look even more like a natural TV movie, and I loved the "soap opera effect" that the high frame rate my TV gave off produced.
Dennis Weaver's psychologically fascinating role as David…
Road rage is taken to the psychotic extreme in Steven Spielberg's made-for-TV movie Duel from 1971. A film that, despite its 450,000 dollar budget was well made enough to eventually get a theatrical release. Dennis Weaver plays a travelling salesman, who ends up in a highway cat and mouse game with a trucker who seems intent on killing him. I saw this once on TV as a kid, but I did not remember more than the basic plot and that it captivated me at the time. I rewatched it on Blu-ray and was interested to see if the plot was really as suspenseful as I recalled or if it would just grow tedious. Duel could easily have been a terrible…
Steven Spielberg's directorial debut is a visceral, exciting thriller with nonstop, heart-pounding action that leaves the audience with bated breath until the final, explosive, epic finale.
Surprisingly well crafted and effective thriller for something originally released as a made for TV movie. The truck is pure menace. It would be right at home in a Mad Max film or a Stephen King short story.
Recuerdo haberla visto en TV por aquellos años de infancia, años muy importantes en mi formación como cinéfilo y pensar en cómo era posible hacer una película de terror que no transcurriera de noche o en lugares oscuros, a campo abierto y en plena carretera. El monstruo es, por supuesto, un camión. Ni siquiera es su conductor.
Más tarde me enteraría que el director era Spielberg y que ésta era su primera película. Wow. ¡Cuánto talento!
Had Hitchcock ever handed over his talent to a road movie... this would be it...
And if driving in the same tracks wasn’t enough, it even has that slight Psycho-substitute of a soundtrack to go with it. And of course, there is obviously the obligatory tight tension, which is the hinge to hold every Hitch film tightly concealed and controlled throughout – something that Spielberg uses by taking this exact tension and making it the effective six-cylinder engine that fires through the entire film. This movie may not be a masterpiece, but being a product short of money and made with an even shorter shooting schedule, you would be surprised just how effectively Spielberg can spellbind you into the driver's…
Finally jumped into the first Spielberg feature, the 1971 thriller "Duel", a mostly overlooked entry in his rich career. This film, despite its fairly minimalistic plot, with its steadfast direction, brilliant chase sequences, all-around paranoia and a great performance by Dennis Weaver, is a terrific exercise in suspense and a great cinematic debut. The beast-like, grim and seemingly unstoppable truck is one of the great cinema villains. I felt like it was Death incarnation, jumping out whenever it wants and making any random person its target. The scene in the diner, besides riveting action sequences (especially the explosive final act), is the standout - as it reveals our protagonist's paranoia, almost losing his sanity trying to tell who might be…
Tense, well-directed, and anchored by a great lead performance from Dennis Weaver, "Duel" marks an impressive first outing from Steven Spielberg and serves as a solid exercise in suspense.
Well-paced, well-shot, well-directed. Spielberg had it in the bag from the beginning. The amount of character drawn out of these hunks of metal is astounding. There is one moment where the truck honks at a train that it is easily keeping speed with and the train honks back. They're alive, they're monstrous. It's like something out of a Stephen King story, except with a proper execution. It's lean and effective and reminds you why the 70s was regarded as such a high-water mark in the US where stories could be open-ended, leave a lot of empty space and be better for it.
I tried to pretend, while watching this, that it was 1971, on a Tuesday, and I was sitting down to ABC's movie of the week, not knowing what an unknown young director was about to broadcast on my TV. It is insane that anything this technically accomplished, with this kind of practical stunt-work and clarity of camera placement, was made for TV. I definitely would have preferred to see the 74 minute version rather than the 1 hour 30 minute European theatrical release version; the dutifully executed but unnecessary padding throws the pace off. But the best scenes are still pretty extraordinary, even if the scant character moments that are there leave you wanting more. The sequence at the snakerama…
Great Direction holds up today, goes a little long so the tension isn't as high at the end
Movies that are slightly off.
Great 60-90 min films (for those days when you just don't have the energy to watch a 3 hour masterpiece)
Doesn't the title of the list explain it well enough? This is a list of hight quality "short" films. Easy…