Twilight's Last Gleaming (1977)




Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.

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Movie Info

Soured on America by his experiences as a POW in Vietnam, General Lawrence Dell (Burt Lancaster) hopes that his government will someday tell the truth about the Southeast Asian debacle, thereby allowing his country to embark upon a healing process. Regarded as a dangerous embarrassment by the higher-ups, Dell is framed on a manslaughter charge and sent to prison. Escaping with three hardened convicts (Paul Winfield, Burt Young, and William Smith), Dell takes over an SAC base, threatening to launch nine Titan missiles if his demands that top-secret Vietnam files be made public are not met. Thus, the fate of the world rests in the hands of the mentally unbalanced Dell, his former superior General MacKenzie (Richard Widmark), and U.S. president David Stevens (Charles Durning). For this picture, Edward Huebach and Ronald M. Cohen adapted Walter Wager's novel Viper Three.
Mystery & Suspense
Directed By:
Written By:
In Theaters:
Allied Artists Pictures Corporation


Burt Lancaster
as Lawrence Dell
Richard Widmark
as Gen. Martin MacKenzie
Charles Durning
as President David Stevens
Paul Winfield
as Powell
Melvyn Douglas
as Guthrie
Burt Young
as Garvas
Joseph Cotten
as Renfrew
Charles Aidman
as Col. Bernstein
Leif Erickson
as CIA Director
David Baxt
as Sgt. Willard
Ed Bishop
as Maj. Fox
Phil Brown
as Rev. Cartwright
Gary Cockrell
as Capt. Jackson
Don Fellows
as Gen. Stonesifer
Roy E. Glenn Jr.
as White House Servant
Garrick Hagon
as Driver Alfie
David Healy
as Maj. Winters
Thomasine Heiner
as Nurse Edith
William Hootkins
as Sgt. Fitzpatrick
Ray Jewers
as Sgt. Domino
Bill Marshall
as Attorney Gen. William Klinger
Lionel Murton
as Col. Horne
Robert Vincent O'Neil
as Briefing Officer
John Ratzenberger
as Sgt. Kopecki
Shane Rimmer
as Col. Franklin
Weston Gavin
as Lt. Wilson
Ronald Lee
as Sgt. Rappaport
Robert MacLeod
as State Trooper Chambers
Richard Jaeckel
as Capt. Stanford Towne
Charles McGraw
as Gen. Peter Crane
Vera Miles
as Victoria Stevens
Morgan Paull
as 1st Lt. Louis Cannellis
Simon Scott
as Phil Spencer
Bill Walker
as Willard
Robert Sherman
as Maj. Le Beau
Gerald S. O'Loughlin
as Brig. Gen. Michael O'Rourke
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Critic Reviews for Twilight's Last Gleaming

All Critics (8)

Intelligent sociopolitical thriller that is effective despite being overlong, stiffly acted and executing a rather nutty plot.

Full Review… | August 9, 2009
Ozus' World Movie Reviews

It's easier to admire Twilight for its intent and its astonishing cast than for what it actually achieves.

Full Review… | June 3, 2008
Mountain Xpress (Asheville, NC)

A far-fetched but exciting political thriller

August 18, 2006
Journal and Courier (Lafayette, IN)

This film isn't very high on realism, but it's exciting.

Full Review… | December 5, 2004
Goatdog's Movies

Quote not available.

November 4, 2005
Boulder Weekly

Quote not available.

July 23, 2005

Audience Reviews for Twilight's Last Gleaming

In terms of philosophy and political relevance, it is amazing that this film isn't more widely circulated. A harrowing exercise in the realm of national security and the rise of the Defense Department as an entity above even the Federal Government, this film does well to capture the impersonality of the commander-in-chief's relationship with leadership and the seeming inability of administrations to truly dispense with the sins of the one before it. Lancaster is compelling as the patriot leading convicts, delivering poised rhetoric that does well to expose the utter immorality of the President's cabinet. Episodes such as the President being completely misled by bad information from an Air Force general motivated by a personal grudge keep the intensity level high. A lack of character development amongst the convicts and hostages in the silo, along with aesthetics and cinematography that have not dated gracefully, keep this one from scoring higher.

Bryan Keith
Bryan Keith

a bit cheesy but nonetheless has plenty of suspense..strong performances by Lancaster and cast hold your interest right up til lthe very end...a taut thriller..lots of mostly intelligent dialogue that wil ldraw you in....

alan jay
alan jay

Super Reviewer

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