The Stunt Man - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

The Stunt Man Reviews

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October 24, 2018
Great mind-bending movie. Highly recommended for anyone who really likes film - just don't take it too seriously, or you'll miss the fun.
August 6, 2018
In my opinion, one of the two greatest movies - ever. Probably not a coincidence that my other choice of the two greatest movies also starred Peter O'Toole (That would be The Lion In Winter.) Stunt Man is one of the darkest of dark comedies and features top level performances from O'Toole, Steve Railsback and Barbara Hershey and a screenplay with surprises around every corner. The supporting roles, by players as diverse as Alex Rocco, Sharon Farrell, Phillip Bruns and true stunt master Chuck Bails, clearly take their cues from the leads and all turn out Oscar worthy (though overlooked) performances.
February 1, 2018
The lines get blurred between what's real and what's a gag as a tyrannical director orchestrates chaos on a movie set to make a masterpiece. Peter O'Toole chews the scenes deliciously, as he tends to do, and his relationship with Railsback makes this movie very entertaining.
January 5, 2018
Peter O'Toole is so delightful in this it's hard to think of anything else about the film. He straight up lights up every scene he's in. I can't think of a scene that makes me happier than watching him being lowered slowly into frame on that lift chair, bouncing around characters as he argues with them. Like *chef finger kiss*

This is such a great little film-what a bizarre premise with such an off-kilter sense of dark humor. It feels like a fun house, and not just because of the rollicking circus-esque music. I was kept on my toes as much as the film crew in the movie, O'Toole walks that line of benevolent dictator so well you genuinely don't know what to expect from him. This movie can be straight up mean at times but it does it in such an unabashed and joyful way you can't help but laugh with it.

The camera work is also particularly stunning for the most part, with amazing use of color, lighting and reflections in key scenes. Steve Railsback is unfortunately the weakest link... I can't help but think they should have cast more of a comedian. Like Alan Arkin could have crushed it and held his own against O'Toole. Oh well.

All in all, pretty delightful. A meaner, post-Vietnam 8 1/2, in a way. I wouldn't mind rewatching this in a theater.


Quote of the film: "I hope this doesn't fuck up our relationship, you being alive and all."
July 25, 2017
An energetic, witty, winking delight about equal parts faith and fools. O'Toole reportedly based his performance on David Lean, though the end result is closer in tone to a Mazursky film.
½ June 23, 2017
Cool story as a guy is chased for shooting a man and on the run he stumbles into a filmset. There, the director takes him in as a stuntman. Weird and different and one of the better "a film within a film" flicks that's out there. Weirdly paced - the mix of "reality" and film is at times superslow, or sometimes very rushed.

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.
May 11, 2017
A hidden gem that refuses to be pigeonholed, a movie within a movie and possibly the best movie ever about the art of trickery called movie-making.
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!
March 31, 2016
It was a bit boring for me...
February 22, 2016
Peter O'Toole should have won the Oscar.
January 5, 2016
Illusion, morality and paranoia -- Richard Rush writes and directs not only a great story about such dangerous subjects, but continuously plays the audience in the same way he shows the protagonist being played, prompting us to question what should be real, proper and/or suspicious. The depth of metaphor and polemics in this film may only be fully answered by watching Rush's brilliant "The Sinister Saga of Making 'The Stunt Man.'" O'Toole is riveting as both the character in the movie, and in his recounting of the making of the movie in 'Sinister Saga.'
December 5, 2014
The movie struggled to convince me of its premise--that this director, however eccentric, would really have reason to put this fellow in unnecessary danger.
½ October 19, 2014
Com o tempo "The Stunt Man" pode até ter perdido alguma da sua relevância de filme pós-Vietname, mas manteve intactas as suas qualidades como peça de cinema arriscado e positivamente enlouquecido (ainda que estruturado de maneira lúcida e até mesmo brilhante). Apesar de uma produção e de um lançamento acidentados, "The Stunt Man" parece bastante confortável na pele de quebra-cabeças matreiro e isso transparece num filme que se diverte ao mesmo tempo que nos diverte (com uma abundância de cenas espectaculares e uma novela que tem tanto de pateta como de envolvente). Além disso, merece um lugarzinho na divisão à parte de filmes sobre filmes.
½ July 27, 2014
A movie about the movie business is always refreshing, but this one is somewhat of an oddity as it's seemingly a satire focused on egomaniac director rater than more or less a realistic depiction of movie making. Perhaps it was ahead of its time with its multidimensional story, but by today's standards, it's really nothing extraordinary.
May 16, 2014
A must-see for anyone interested in the philosophical implications of the filmmaking process. Steve Railsback is a mentally-unbalanced Vietnam vet on the run from the law. After accidentally causing the death of a movie stunt man, he stumbles onto the set of the film in question. Instantly in love with the leading lady (Barbara Hershey), he agrees at the insistence of megalomaniacal director Peter O'Toole (in one of his greatest film performances) to stay on as a replacement for the fallen stunt driver. In exchange for not turning Railsback over to the police, O'Toole tells Railsback that he must also assume the stunt man's identity so that O'Toole can finish his location shoot in time and on budget. The paranoid Railsback begins to suspect that O'Toole is really a psychopath who wants to kill him; Hershey, who idolizes O'Toole, tries to convince Railsback that he's delusional...but as time goes on and on-set pressures mount, even she begins to question the director's intentions. Many will be frustrated by this film's determinedly enigmatic approach to narrative and theme, but it's a damn fun ride that leaves the viewer plenty to think about at the end. A satire as well as a thriller, this semi-forgotten film is probably the best film of 1980 (Raging Bull notwithstanding). A film lover's film.
Super Reviewer
April 15, 2014
A movie of intrigue but lacking in the craft needed to make it a classic.There are enough twists to keep it entertaining but it is not terribly memorable.
February 23, 2014
I didn't understand a word of this but I found this to be utterly fascinating.
February 21, 2014
A crazy story about a controlling and ambitious director doing anything to get his shot. It is all about perception and what is real and what is just movie magic. Once again, Peter O'Toole rises above what seems to be a one-note character to give a layered and cynical performance as the director who hires a fugitive as one of his stunt men.

Grade: B
February 17, 2014
I love movies about making movies so I'd been wanting to see this for a while, it's a got a great set up, and for the most part i enjoyed it, the scenes within the film and the behind the scenes stuff are really good, but the love story was pretty weak, i couldnt believe she would fall for him, he was kinda bland, however i wasnt a fan of how this resolved, its not what happens exactly, but how they do it just felt off to me idk, but otoole is great here, one of his finest performances
January 8, 2014
Once you give in to its charms, it stays with you forever
December 19, 2013
Rush's cult classic is arguably one of the most remarkable and entertaining satires and black comedies about films and filmmaking as it has that extra bite. However, apart from taking obvious digs at the world of cinema, it intelligently refers to other things and particularly the Vietnam War, an element that greatly contributes to a less restricted viewpoint on what really differentiates the fact with the fiction - or in this world the cinematic truth and the non-cinematic one. Apart from its cleverness, the film is genuinely entertaining, exciting and very often funny thanks to a great screenplay but also some ace performances by the cast headed by a magnificent Peter O'Toole. In one of his most memorable turns, he plays the part of the director, a puppet master whose obsession and suavity make him elegantly dangerous.
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