Wanted to rewatch this after this article. Two big things that make this movie so engaging:
1. Richard Kimble’s profession. As a doctor, he knows how to give himself a tetanus shot, tip off the EMT’s on the prison guard’s injuries, etc. Audiences like characters who are good at their jobs.
…Which applies to the next thing:
2. Sam Gerard — the supposed antagonist — is so. damn. likeable. And equally good at his job.
Equally likeable protagonist and antagonist. Both good at their jobs.