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  • Point Blank [VHS]
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Point Blank [VHS]

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Product Details

  • Actors: Lee Marvin, Angie Dickinson, Keenan Wynn, Carroll O'Connor, Lloyd Bochner
  • Directors: John Boorman
  • Writers: Alexander Jacobs, David Newhouse, Donald E. Westlake, Rafe Newhouse
  • Producers: Irwin Winkler, Judd Bernard, Robert Chartoff
  • Format: Closed-captioned, Color, HiFi Sound, NTSC
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • Number of tapes: 1
  • Studio: MGM (Warner)
  • VHS Release Date: June 22, 1994
  • Run Time: 92 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (158 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: 6301971876
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #61,078 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Editorial Reviews


Walker (Lee Marvin) strides through Los Angeles with the steel-eyed stare of a stone-cold killer, or perhaps a ghost. Betrayed by his wife and best friend, who gun him down point-blank and leave him for dead after a successful heist, Walker blasts his way up the criminal food chain in a quest for revenge. Did he survive the shooting or return from the grave, or is it all a dying dream? The question is left in the air in John Boorman's modern film noir, a brutal revenge thriller based on Richard Stark's novel The Hunter (remade by Brian Helgeland as Payback), set in the impersonal concrete and steel canyons of Los Angeles and eerily empty cells of Alcatraz. Walker kills without remorse, guided by shadowy "informant" Keenan Wynn, whose own agenda is carefully concealed, and assisted by Angie Dickinson, as he desperately searches for someone, anyone, who can just give him his money. But if Walker is an extreme incarnation of the revenge-driven noir antihero, the modern syndicate has been transformed into a world of paper jungles and corporate businessmen, an alienating concept to the two-fisted, gun-wielding gangster. Boorman creates a hard, austere look for the film and fragments the story with flashes of painful memory, grafting the New Wave onto old genres with confidence and style. Haunting and brutal, Point Blank remains one of the most distinctive crime thrillers ever made. --Sean Axmaker

Customer Reviews

The soundtrack is very good, too.
James Tetreault
Director John Boorman manages to maintain the right balance of homage to classic noir with some modern jazzy touches that make the film a true original.
David Baldwin
And if you do, just remember...this story may or may not really take place...it may just be all in someone's mind.

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

100 of 104 people found the following review helpful By Wayne Klein HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on July 16, 2005
Format: DVD
Leave it to John Boorman to combine the stylized storytelling of French New Wave with American film noir in "Point Blank". This fascinating, challenging movie was made in 1967 when the film world was in the embrace of experimental film. Although it's quite different from "Blow Up", the storytelling style is just as stylized and unique. Lee Marvin plays Walker a criminal cheated out of $93,000 from a robbery of a mob like syndicate on Alcatraz by his best friend Reese(John Vernon). Participating in the heist/murder is Walker's young wife who has been having an affair with Reese. After getting the money, Reese shoots his friend, takes his wife and leaves him for dead on Alcatraz.

With the help of a mysterious benefactor (Keenan Wynn), Walker tracks down Reese exacting revenge in pursuit for what he's owed. When his wife commits suicide, Walker seeks out her sister Chris (Angie Dickinson)in hope of luring Reese out of hiding. From there this convoluted mystery spins more threads than director John Boorman knows what to do with but, surprisingly, he keeps the story from getting too tangled up.

Boorman and director Steven Soderbergh ("Ocean's 11", "Solaris", "Sex Lies and Videotape")provide a fascinating commentary track on the making of the movie. Boorman recalls that originally Lee Marvin wanted Peggy Lee for the role that Dickinson plays. While he went with Boorman's decision of Dickinson he wasn't very nice to his co-star which worked particularly during the scene where Dickinson starts hitting Marvin. Dickinson hit Marvin so hard he had bruises the next day but the actor stoically took the hits and the camera kept rolling.
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35 of 37 people found the following review helpful By Daniel C. Markel on August 10, 2005
Format: DVD
This review is for the Warner Brothers DVD released in 2005.

`Point Blank' starts out in an abandoned Alcatraz Prison circa 1967 where Walker (Lee Marvin), his wife, and Mal Reese (John Vernon - probably best remembered as Dean Wormer in `Animal House') rob an apparently illegal money payoff. Once the money is counted, Reese shoots Walker in a prison cell leaving him for dead and takes Walker's $93,000. Walker recovers from the shooting and with the help of a stranger named Yost (Keenan Wynn), Walker finds out that Reese and Walker's wife ran off to Los Angeles and Reese is now a big player in a major crime syndicate. This sets up the rest of the movie where Walker hunts down Reese but also wants all of this $93,000 back.

The movie is clearly dark in mood and substance, even though it was filmed in vibrant color. Angie Dickenson plays the role of Walker's sister-in-law Chris, who helps him find Reese. The chemistry between Chris and Walker seems overtly empty and melancholy. An animated Carroll O'Conner (best known for playing Archie Bunker in 'All in the Family') brings a lot of energy to the last segment of the movie. The film has an unmistakably late `60's look with fast and chaotic flashbacks and over-accentuated sound effects - such as loud, reverberating footsteps when an intensely focused Lee Marvin is hunting down Reese. This movie is more sexual and violent than noir films of the `40's and `50's, but is still restrained by today's standards. The film's biggest asset is how Lee Marvin confronts and handles his adversaries - each situation is original and effective, but not over the top. The plot as a whole has very few major surprises, although there is one minor twist in the end.
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23 of 23 people found the following review helpful By Clare Quilty on July 31, 2005
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
It's about time this movie got released on DVD.

It's odd that a film could spawn a remake ("Payback"), a glib nod ("Grosse Pointe Blank") and countless homages ("The Limey," among others) and still be as underseen as "Point Blank."

The lack of a disc certainly didn't help its low profile, but of course this is a challenging, idiosyncratic movie, even three decades later. The plot is simple -- a crook is betrayed by his wife and partner and spends the rest of the movie trying to get what he's owed -- but the editing and narrative structure is unusual. What in the world did audiences possibly make of this back when it was first released?

It's a remarkable film, as startling and innovative as Richard Lester's "Petulia," although admittedly it's thematically much less complex.

This edition is excellent, too. Great sound, great picture and a fantastic commentary by director John Boorman and big-time "Point" fan Steven Soderbergh, who laughingly admits to Boorman that he's ripped this movie off more than a few times. Their chat is more technical than gossipy and deals heavily with the editing, the production (the script was only 70 pages long), the studio's concerns about the picture, the actors, violence, surrealism (is it all a dream?) and Boorman's elaborate use of color (the tones of clothing and sets intensify over the course of the film).

I've gotten a lot of good DVD's this year but in terms of content, presentation and extas, this is one of the best.
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