Duel ★★

A genuinely unsettling film from Steven Spielberg that's hamstrung by its ridiculous concept - for those who don't know, a man travelling by car on LA's highways is hounded and driven to the edge of reason by a sadistic truck driver. We never see the driver, or find out his reasons for doing so.

One of his earliest directorial efforts, Duel shows much of Spielberg's promise in its control of tension. He brings enough variety to a very simple idea to keep viewers interested and his use of silence is incredible.

In the end, despite its novelty appeal, Duel just doesn't offer anything other than brief thrills. When watching early works by acclaimed filmmakers it's a good litmus test to consider how you'd rate it if it were made by a 'nobody'. So two stars it is.