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Point Blank (1967)
Point Blank is a 1967 American crime film directed by John Boorman and starring Lee Marvin and Angie Dickinson, adapted from the noir crime pulp novel The Hunter by Donald E. Westlake, writing as Richard Stark. Boorman directed the film at Marvin's request and Marvin played a central role in the film's development and staging. The film was not a box office success in 1967 but has since gone on to become a cult classic, eliciting praise from such critics as film historian David Thomson. Walker (Lee Marvin) – originally named "Parker" in Stark's novel – works together with his friend Mal Reese (John Vernon in his first major role) to steal a large amount of cash from a courier transporting funds for a major gambling operation, with the deserted Alcatraz island as a drop point. Reese then double-crosses Walker by shooting him, leaving him for dead. Reese also makes off with Walker's wife Lynne (Sharon Acker). Walker recovers. With assistance from the mysterious Yost (Keenan Wynn), who seems to know everything about everybody, Walker sets out to find Reese, take his revenge and recover the $93,000 he is owed.
The story is almost obliviously simple: Lee Marvin is a mafioso who's been turned on and left for dead. But not quite dead: He comes back (from the grave? who knows...) to get his vengeance. Or more precisely, to get the $93,000 he is owed by his former bosses.
Marvin works his way up the food chain of The Organazation, and flunkie after flunkie meets a tragic end (though, oddly, never quite at Marvin's hand). But no one really believes he just wants his money. A hidden agenda is always assumed (and that agenda presumes murder), but it never comes to be.
With the ample aid of Angie Dickinson, Marvin creates a memorable character in a wholly unmemorable story. 'I want my money!' starts off as a cute rallying cry but quickly becomes tired. Though John Boorman would love for us to find this simple story to be clever, but it soon gets awfully repetitious. Marvin carries much of the film on his gravelly, innate charm, but even he can't sustain one note that long.
Included (strangely) as part of the Film Noir Collection #2 DVD box set.