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The Gauntlet (1977) - movie overview

The Gauntlet (1977)

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Plot Description

Original title: Gauntlet, The

DVD Release Date
• R1: Mar 30, 1999

Budget USD 5,500,000

MPAA Rating

Running Time
1 hour, 49 minutes

Country USA

Studio Warner Brothers

More info on

Other Titles
• The Gauntlet (1977)
• Der Mann, der niemals aufgibt (1978)

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Genre: Action, Thriller, Police, On The Road, Betrayal, Thieves, Gangsters, Prostitution, Murder, Detectives, Suspense, Escape, Drugs, Hostage

Plot: Clint Eastwood plays an alcoholic, dim-witted cop, Ben Shockley, who has to escort an irate prostitute, Gus Mally (Sondra Locke), from Las Vegas to Phoenix so she can testify in a mob trial. Gus immediately warns Ben of the danger that they’re in, but he doesn’t believe her. He eventually figures out that his superiors want Gus dead and chose him for the job because they thought he’d fail. The two spend most of the film eluding the trigger-happy cops. The banter between Ben and Gus, who initially despise each other, is just as brutal and entertaining as the action set pieces. And when the two finally warm to each other, it’s surprisingly effective. Eastwood and Locke made many films together, but THE GAUNTLET features what may be their strongest collaboration. Literal-minded critics may malign the film for its over-the-top explosive action, but it’s clear that Eastwood was aware of how outrageous and preposterous the action in the film is. As Jan De Bont would later do with another wildly entertaining and implausible film involving a bus, SPEED, Eastwood here has stripped down the action movie to its bare essence. THE GAUNTLET is a fun ride.

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 Directed by
Clint Eastwood
Mystic River, Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil, Bird
 Written by
Michael Butler
Pale Rider, The Car, Code of Silence
Dennis Shryack
Turner & Hooch, Pale Rider, Cadence
Clint Eastwood
Million Dollar Baby, The Good, the Bad and the Ugly, Unforgiven
Pat Hingle
Batman, Batman & Robin, Batman Forever
Mara Corday
Sudden Impact, The Rookie, Tarantula
Sondra Locke
The Outlaw Josey Wales, Sudden Impact, Every Which Way But Loose
William Prince
Spies Like Us, Family Plot, The Paper
Bill McKinney
Deliverance, First Blood, The Outlaw Josey Wales
Michael Cavanaugh
The Haunting, Any Which Way You Can, Breast Men
 Music By
Jerry Fielding
The Wild Bunch, The Outlaw Josey Wales, Escape from Alcatraz

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Traffic (2000)
Mad Max (1979)
Strange Days (1995)
Last Boy Scout, The (1991)

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