A list of all films associated with the Criterion Collection, including laserdiscs, DVDs, Blu-rays, Essential Arthouse, Eclipse Series, Hulu Plus,…
Even bad guys have bad days
Ex-gangster Willie Parker has betrayed his former "colleagues" and now lives in Spain where he thinks he can hide from their vengeance...
The Hit is a funny little film, and I mean that in more ways than one. Trying to describe what it is in one or two categories is almost impossible, so I would end up describing it as a buddy hitman road movie crime comedy-drama thriller. Of sorts.
The crux of the movie is that Terence Stamp, living in hiding in Spain, finds his past catching up him as the old crime boss he squealed on for a deal sends John Hurt and a startlingly young-looking Tim Roth after him (via some Spanish thugs) to bring him to Paris for a reunion - and his assassination.
To say it doesn't quite go according to plan would be an understatement as…
What's up with that poster? The Hit features a Terrence Stamp who has never looked better, and they go with the Spanish girl and Hurt? Not that Hurt is the wrong way to go, I guess, but the Criterion cover is 100 times better.
On to the film, The Hit is a slow burning road trip, sort of, where Terrence Stamp gets caught up by his past as "a grass", after being effectively 10 years on the run. John Hurt and his apprentice Tim Roth playing the part of judge, jury and executioner on the payroll of Stamp's former boss.
Things definitely don't go as planned as the motley crew set out on their trip from a Spanish village towards Paris, and what resembles bonds are formed across "enemy lines", as well as Laure del Sol complicating things further.
Let's just say, it ain't easy being the quiet, efficient hitman.
Included In Lists:
Criterion Collection - #469
Review In A Nutshell:
Stephen Frears' The Hit is the story of an ex-gangster who exposed the truths of his friends and their operations in a court trial; cut to ten years later living in security and isolation in Spain, suddenly becomes kidnapped then is put on a long road trip to Paris where he is planned to be executed.
It is a film that contains a intriguing premise that surely promises tension but ultimately all it delivers are idle conversations that lack impact; neither exploring its characters or speak of a bigger idea that would make this story a necessary journey for the audience to sit through. It is only during the…
If you're still puzzling over how to get from 'The Naked Spur' to 'Bottle Rocket' in three moves or less, this will come in handy.
A gem of a 1980s British gangster film with three amazing turns from Terence Stamp as the supergrass - looking very attractive, even if I, a straight man, do say so - John Hurt utterly convincing as the cold eyed assassin and Tim Roth as the young yobbo apprentice with the short fuse.
There's support from a suitably weary and dogged Fernando Rey as the cop on their trail and Laura Del Sol is the senorita taken along for the ride.
Look out too for early appearances from Ralph Brown and Jim Braodbent and, bizarrely, Lennie Peters of Peters and Lee fame as the silent Mr Corrigan, the man who orders the titular hit.
It's all rather nicely directed by Stephen Frears, though with such a capable cast it could be argued it was idiot proof to make. The film only slightly dips towards the end, a trend in a few movies from Frears.
This review may contain spoilers. I can handle the truth.
God save British neo-noir. Especially when it takes a detour to make like a road trip comedy without ever losing its edge.
Not quite sure what to make of Terence Stamp's performances at the start & end of the film; both his (faux?) naive "cor blimey" act on the stand & his last-minute change of heart (in his blanket-cum-religious garb, no less) seemed a little awkward. That middle section, though, when he's light on his feet & doesn't have a care in the world & wears this infuriating / radiant beatific smile, is wonderful. (& the way it culminates with that gorgeous shot / reverse shot of a content Stamp in front of the waterfall spray & a bedraggled Hurt, sporting his new scratches, in…
Moody and atmospheric, great performances all round.
Flat out fun from start to finish. All three leads have never been better.
This movie is about doom. It's a road trip to the gallows. They took the ending of The Long Good Friday and stretched it out to a feature length. If I were a criminal I think I'd be like Terence Stamp's character. He cultured himself at the expense of someone else's suffering and then thought he'd found some secret knowledge about how the world hangs together. But when the plan stumbled on a contingency it all fell apart. That's probably what'll really happen. John Hurt only takes his sunglasses off to suffer. They hide his doleful eyes. The scene where Stamp finds out he won't make it to France and reveals himself to Braddock is heartrendingly pathetic.
“Come, friend, you…
Well that was just aces, aces all around. When they say they don't make 'em like that any more, I always took it to mean a "them" way in the past, like 40's-50's. But they *really* don't make 'em like this anymore.
Or ever, really.
And they damn well should.
Der Film handelt vom sinnlos zerstörerischen Wechselspiel von Verrat und Rache. Der britische Gangster Willie Parker geht nach einem gescheiterten Raubüberfall mit der Polizei einen Deal ein und denunziert vor Gericht seine Komplizen. Noch im Gerichtssaal kündigen sie ihm mit bedrohlichem Gesang die Rache an, die dann viele Jahre später tatsächlich erfolgen soll: Auftragskiller entführen Parker in dessen spanischem Exil und sollen ihn nach Paris bringen, um ihn dort zu ermorden. Die Fahrt über die Pyrenäen gerät allerdings zur Strapaze. Terence Stamp spielt sehr imposant den Entführten, der so gerissen ist, dass er zwischen seinen beiden Entführern Zweifel über Loyalität und Kompetenz des jeweils anderen hervorruft. John Hurt brilliert als wortkarger Profikiller, Tim Roth spielt mit einer aggressiven Hooligan-Attitüde dessen grünschnäbeligen Assistenten.
[gesehen im englischen Originalton]
Movie #1 for my November Fuzz Marathon.
Based on the title, Stephen Frears directing, a Criterion Collection release and the headlining cast, I expected a good hitman movie, but I didn't really expect this. A great little existential hitmen on the road with their intended victim, with some great characters played brilliantly.
It's not a perfect movie, as things have to be set up, so we start with an eight minute sequence where we see a robbery or something about to go down, with a young Willie Parker (Terence Stamp) among the group, then see the aftermath, with Willie on the stand in a courtroom ratting on the ringleader Mr. Corrigan (Lennie Peters), whose underlings threaten Willie with a song.…
Unpredictable genre piece w cool visual aesthetic & soundtrack. Great performances!
Frears and the Coen Brothers converged at the same point in 1984. Frears had The Hit and the Coens had Blood Simple. While Frears would diverge to make My Beautiful Launderette and eventually make two very good movies with John Cusack (The Grifters and High Fidelity), the Coens would (unknowingly?) riff off The Hit for their first Oscar wins with Fargo and go on to massive prominence.
The Hit is a crime drama inlaid with the ease of a road movie. The performances are understated, except for the sudden outbursts of violence from William Hurt and Tim Roth's characters. Hurt is unnerving, Roth is a caged animal with an innocent kindness, and Terrence Stamp is genial and reflective.
Seeds of Fargo, Roth's whole career, and Tarantino permeate Frears movie from the clacking Spanish score, Roth's grinning, street-level criminality, to the satisfyingly just triumph of the ever resourceful and resilient Maggie, played by Laura Del Sol.
UPDATED: January 28, 2016
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The entire Criterion collection organized by spine number.
I don't know why I did this.
Number I've Seen: 196/776 (25%)