The Stunt Man Reviews
O'Toole looks like a God, a true leader - not the nicest one, but a perfectoionist flying around in his director crane, making this artsy, randomly created film that looks improvised - while our guys paranoia increases. At times very hard to follow and there's many layers here - I'm sure it can be analyzed to bits, but I surely won't. I will send props to the actors though, it's lovely acted out.
Not a funny film, really, not action filled either - well in away, but it's just on sets when shooting action scenes. It's a bit of everything really being very original and impossible to fit into one category. It's sadly way too long, even if it's rearly boring - I wanted to speed up the pace near the end, though.
A film like no other, it's like a big goofball trying to make something serious in some unserious surroundings. This ludicrous film may put you in trance or annoy you, it certainly won't be remembered as straight forward.
7 out of 10 women in trunks.
This movie is essentially about three things: mind tricks, stunts and Peter O'Toole. I love all three, so it's on my top list. Flawed? Yes! Self-aware? Yes! Still a masterpiece? Definitely!
Richard Rush's , The Stunt Man is one of the best films about filmmaking, or I should say ,about the deception that is filmmaking, after all as one line in the film says. "KIng Kong was only 3 foot 6 inches tall ".
In a twist of fate ,our convict is hired by Eli Cross, the megalomaniac director of the film to replace the stunt man who just died during one of the stunts.Then as he learns his craft and falls in love with the leading lady, he soon has to come to grips with his own sense of reality ,as it plays against the phony reality of a movie set. Steve Railsback's uncomfortable child like performance works well against the rest of the cast's arrogant haughty artsy persona's, making his character feel like it never quite fits into their world.
The real jewel in this film is Peter O'toole's performance as Eli Cross. He attacks this role with all the depth of a shakespearian character, as he manipulates all the players on his set, and you soon realize he will stop at nothing to get the shot he wants.
His performance was Oscar worthy, but he did not win,but Hollywood corrected that error by awarding him the following year for a lesser role in My Favourite Year.
Dominic Frontiere's music is reminiscent of The Sting and gives the film an almost silent film era feel.
I would have rated this film higher except some of it does feel a bit dated,but do yourself a favour and see the underated gem.
This is up there with T. E. Lawrence as Peter O'Toole's great performances, with good support from Steve Railsback & Barbara Hershey.