The Gauntlet (1977)


“You see, we got a problem, you and me. We don’t like each other very much, but we have to take a trip together. Now you can come along peacefully or you can be a pain in the ass. But I’m warning ya, you mess around and I’ll put the cuffs on you. You talk dirty, I gag ya, if you run, I’ll shoot you. My name is Shockley, and we’ve got a plane to catch. Let’s go.” – Ben Shockley

Number of Times Seen – 1 (1 Oct 2019)

Brief Synopsis – A Phoenix police detective is tasked with bringing a witness from Las Vegas but he ends up having the mob and the police chasing him.

My Take on it – This is a film that I’ve been interested in seeing for quite some time since I’ve been a long time fan of Clint Eastwood’s films both as an actor and as a director.

This film works largely due to the very unique concept that keeps the story and the viewer on edge the whole time.

Both Eastwood and Sandra Locke are superb in this film and the chemistry between them is electrifying throughout.

Love how their chemistry gets better and better as the story unfolds and they both quickly realize how much they must rely on one another during their quest for safety across state lines.

The suspense level keeps rising as the story unfolds and as we get the understanding that they can’t seem to be able to trust anyone as they get deeper and deeper into their journey.

Eastwood have been known as an iconic police detective for decades but I really liked the way that he plays this character differently.

He knows that he isn’t the best detective out there, but he is true to his trade and his mission no matter the cost.

His character’s ability to flow with the situations works really well in establishing that he has spot on street smarts that will hopefully help him complete his assignment especially as both he and the viewer are constantly bombarded with new and strange surprises along the way.

Bottom Line – Great concept that works really well especially due to the performances of Eastwood and Locke. The chemistry between them is electrifying and gets better as they slowly learn that they can only count on one another during their trip across state lines. The film is quite suspenseful especially once it becomes established that no on can be trusted as the story gets deeper and deeper. Loved the fact that Eastwood plays this character quite differently from the iconic police roles of his career and this detective may not be the best there is, but he learns to move with the punches as the story unfolds into places no one including him can expect. Recommended!

MovieRob’s Favorite Trivia – According to the book “Clint Eastwood: Hollywood’s Loner” (1992) by Michael Munn, the desert hideaway house that got shot-up cost two hundred fifty thousand dollars to construct, and featured seven thousand drilled holes that were used to house explosive squibs which would be set off to simulate gunfire. A team of fifteen men worked eight hour days for a month rigging the dwelling with the squibs for a shoot-out sequence that would result in the demolition and collapses of the building. Special Effects Coordinator Chuck Gaspar said, “Needless to say, we only had once chance to film the take.” And Clint Eastwood said of the sequence that he wanted “not just an ordinary explosion. I wanted the house to collapse to the ground as though it was being eaten away by a gigantic mass of termites. (From IMDB)

Rating – Globe Worthy (8/10)

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One thought on “The Gauntlet (1977)

  1. Pingback: Temporal Top Ten – 1977 | MovieRob

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