Monday, February 20, 2012

Tuesday's Overlooked Movies: Plunder Road

This is apparently a pretty rare late film noir, since it's got only five reviews in IMDb. I loaned this on a VHS cassette from a friend of mine, as I'd always wanted to see it, and while it didn't quite live up to my expectations, it's still a very worthwhile little thriller.

Plunder Road is a caper film, done on a minuscule budget, with limited sets and a small number of players, though the caper in the beginning of the film is quite far away from being minuscule. The film doesn't tell much about the guys who do the caper, but we are made known that some of them are career criminals and former inmates. The movie is about trying to take the loot to a safer place with three different trucks. It's a road movie, but the machines these guys drive are machines of imprisonment, not freedom, like they are in Easy Rider or Thelma and Louise. Likewise, the whole movie is intentionally mechanic, which increases the sense of irony. The players in the movie are nothing but pawns in the game. They struggle to get out, but because they do what they do, they have no chance.

There are some inconcistencies throughout that lessen the impact of the film, though, but not remarkably so. If you get a chance to see this, don't hesitate. All the actors are unknown (at least I didn't recognize the names of the faces), except Elisha Cook Jr., who's remarkably good in this as well. The writer, Steven Ritch, plays himself one of the crooks.

The director, Hubert Cornfield, is a very interesting figure in his own right: many of his few films were based on paperback originals: Lure of the Swamp is based on a Gil Brewer novel, 3rd Voice is based on a Charles Williams novel and The Night of the Following Day is based on a Lionel White novel. Later on he seems to have moved to France.

More Overlooked Films to be had on Todd Mason's blog. (At least I think there will be something. I won't have the time to do this tomorrow, so I did it already.)

1 comment:

Todd Mason said...

There's ALWAYS something, even if I often don't have time to do my own promptly...THE NIGHT OF THE FOLLOWING DAY is one of those I vaguely remember as compelling and wouldn't mind seeing again to confirm or correct.