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You can skip movies 10 times but never go back.
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…
The truck itself as a conscious entity, a malevolent beast, headlights as eyes glowing in the dark, the death stare of a mechanical predator, driving (pun not intended) our helpless victim from slight annoyance to paranoia to acute fear of death, all in the speed of 90 miles per hour. (Ok, I lied. That pun was intended.)
Very cool idea, like the desert version of The Shallows -- sharing almost the same climax as well -- but I didn't enjoy it as much as expected, Spielberg keeps repeating the same mundane shots, the sound of the engine running is played so consistently throughout the film it starts to sound like a mosquito flying near your ear. A rather frustrating experience overall.
Spielberg's first feature is a very Hitchcockian one. Full of suspense, technique and very well built chase scenes.
Did not like that voiceover though
Where did this Spielberg go?
One of my new favorites.
I watched this for "Driver's Ed" homework.
Beeindruckend spannende Hatz von Steven Spielberg. Unglaublich wie viel der gute Mann aus dem Bisschen herausgeholt hat, das er zur Verfügung hatte und damit einen wirklich packenden Thriller mit Kammerspielatmosphäre draußen auf der Straße erschaffen hat. Kamera und Schnitt haben hier einfach großartig zugearbeitet und einen Film geschaffen der seinerzeit seinesgleichen gesucht haben wird aber auch heute noch zu überzeugen weiß.
This is one of the greatest monster movies ever made. The monster just so happens to be a semi truck hunting its boxy late 60's car prey in the desolate, monochromatic wasteland of the American West. The truck is driven by a homicidal maniac mad about getting cut off. We never see his face. The victim is a salesman heading home after a long time on the road. We never learn much about him, and he hardly says a word. Film is the best way to tell this story in lieu of a graphic novel (which would be fabulous!), and it's one of my favorite Spielberg movies. It's absolutely brilliant. What an amazing directorial debut!
I've been watching a lot of The Twilight Zone recently and Spielberg's debut feature is essentially a 90 minute Twilight Zone episode, which makes a whole lot of sense having been written by Richard Matheson.
Movies that capture the feel of that show are winners in my book.
That stuff's intense!!! Big ol' baddie in a beat up truck makes you freaking quake in your car seat! Gripping chases, big dumb protagonist. Do it.
If you're feeling overwhelmed, but still want to squeeze a film into your daily routine, this list is made for…