Thursday, February 19, 2009

Flight To Fury

(1964, USA, 74m, b/w)
d/ed Monte Hellman p Fred Roos, Eddie Romero sc Jack Nicholson ph Mike Accion cast Dewey Martin, Jack Nicholson, Vic Diaz, Fay Spain, Joseph Estrada, John Hackett, Jacqueline Hellman, Juliet Prado, Lucien Pan

Shot in the Philippines whilst Back Door To Hell was edited at night, this is a rather baggier film than its companion, written by Nicholson from transcribed chats with fellow passengers on the boat coming over. The result is a discursive and lackadaisical thriller in pursuit of a bag of diamonds, treading water for too long before a plane crash deposits an appealingly motley band of strangers in the jungle. Nicholson revels in an early psycho role and the tone is pleasingly stark and amoral, but it is an unfocused precursor to Hellman’s later work, only stepping up in the climactic chase, filmed with the obsession of The Shooting, with the final shot of dead-man’s shoes summarising the futility of the preceding 74 minutes in logical prefigurement of Two-Lane Blacktop’s conclusion.

© Time Out Film Guide

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