HOME |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
Newest Reviews
Lu Over the Wall
She's Funny That Way
Vox Lux
Aftermath, The
Five Fingers for Marseilles
Jupiter's Moon
Favourite, The
Mysteries of the Gods
Coming Home
De Sade
Patti Cake$
Hellbound
Final Destination 2
Romance
Bros: After the Screaming Stops
Cockleshell Heroes, The
Mule, The
Sunday in the Country
Nutcracker Fantasy
Spellcaster
Hipsters
Executive Action
Captain Marvel
Zombie Girl
Can You Ever Forgive Me?
Rhinoceros
Monkey King 3, The
Adventurers, The
Stripped to Kill
Daughter of Dr. Jekyll
Aladdin's Magic Lamp
Christopher Robin
Hole in the Ground, The
Daniel
Blue Christmas
Death Trip
She's Missing
Return of the Soldier
Shaft
Summer Lovers
   
 
Newest Articles
The Hole in the Ground: Director Lee Cronin Interview
She's Missing: Director Alexandra McGuinness Interview
Woo's the Boss: Last Hurrah for Chivalry & Hand of Death on Blu-ray
Get Ahead in Showbiz: Expresso Bongo and It's All Happening
Outer Space and Outta Sight: Gonks Go Beat on Blu-ray
Tucked: The Derren Nesbitt Interview
Locomotion Pictures: The Best of British Transport Films on Blu-ray
Roman Scandals: Extreme Visions from Ancient Rome
Spider-Wrong and Spider-Right: The Dragon's Challenge and Into the Spider-Verse
Monster Dog: Cujo on Blu-ray
For Christ's Sake: Jesus Christ Superstar and The Last Temptation of Christ
Not In Front of the Children: Inappropriate Kids Movies
Deeper into Ozploitation: Next of Kin and Fair Game
Between the Wars: Babylon Berlin Series 1&2 on DVD
Hard Luck Story: Detour on Blu-ray
   
 
  Coogan's Bluff Give Us Another Chorus Of The Pigeon Toed Orange PeelBuy this film here.
Year: 1968
Director: Don Siegel
Stars: Clint Eastwood, Lee J. Cobb, Susan Clark, Tisha Sterling, Don Stroud, Betty Field, Tom Tully, Melodie Johnson, James Edwards, Rudy Diaz, David Doyle, Louis Zorich, Meg Myles, Marjorie Bennett, Seymour Cassel, John Coe, Skip Battyn, Conrad Bain
Genre: Thriller
Rating:  7 (from 1 vote)
Review: Arizona lawman Walt Coogan (Clint Eastwood) is tracking a man who has killed his wife on the local Native American reservation, and has ended up in the desert, not realising that his quarry is watching him and aiming a rifle at him. Coogan knows he's on the right trail when he finds the boots and clothes of the now stripped to a loincloth fugitive, and he manages to confuse him enough to capture him with no blood spilled. Later, he chains up his prisoner outside a girlfriend's home and pops inside for a bath and some lovin', much to the annoyance of his superiors. That's why Coogan is sent off the next day to New York to escort a prisoner back to Arizona...

Director Don Siegel had already made a tougher, grittier form of the traditional cop thriller with the same year's Madigan, but it was Coogan's Bluff, produced by star Eastwood's Malpaso company, that really set the template for decades of the things to come. Dirty Harry might have been the one they wanted to emulate (especially in its box office takings), but this film got there first with its rogue policeman and the unlovely villain he is on the trail of presented here as if it were unthinkable that there could be any other way of doing it in the crime genre.

But as well as that, Coogan's Bluff is a culture clash although not one which regards the hippies of the era with disdain so much as cynical amusement. As an outsider in New York, where he is barely tolerated even by the law, Coogan is the ideal observer for those who were not part of the underground scene of the late sixties, which would have been most of the audience even then. You can regard this as the equivalent of the Star Trek episode where the Enterprise is overrun with hippies, it's the same dynamic only instead of a sequence where the conservative Mr Spock jams with them, we have a bit where our comparitively straightlaced hero beds a hippie chick (Tisha Sterling, a sixties starlet who never quite made the big time).

That girl (who according to the probation report we glimpse is seventeen years old!) is the partner in crime and love of Ringerman (Don Stroud), a motorcycle riding crook who caused a ruckus in Coogan's home state and is currently residing in a New York Bellevue after a bad L.S.D. trip. When he meets with the Lieutenant in charge of the case (Lee J. Cobb) Coogan is told that he might have to wait anywhere from a week to a month for Ringerman to be released into his custody. That's not good enough for him and he proceeds to use his initiative and spring the criminal, but it backfires on him when he is beaten up and the bad guys make a swift getaway.

It's not really acknowledged in the film, but if Coogan hadn't been so eager and had stuck to the rules, then he might have saved himself a lot of trouble and had a nice New York holiday into the bargain. As it is, he is ordered home but refuses, turning vigilante to use his tracking skills in the big city for a change. Here he gets to meet some real lowlifes, including Ringerman's mother (Betty Field) who nearly throws a plant pot at his head, and a whole nightclub full of psychedelic groovers leading to a worlds in collision scene where Coogan picks his way through them, getting the information he needs from a naked lady. There's more convention from probation officer Susan Clark, but even she confounds the visitor by not jumping into bed with him and getting annoyed when he keeps chasing away her obnoxious clients. The film may be of its time in some regards, amusingly so, but this still a quality thriller from a director and star who were revolutionising the Hollywood mainstream. Music by Lalo Schifrin.
Reviewer: Graeme Clark

 

This review has been viewed 4474 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

 

Don Siegel  (1912 - 1991)

Respected American director, a former editor, whose action thrillers were second to none. He started out in lower budget movies like The Big Steal, Riot in Cell Bock 11 and The Lineup but come the sixties he started making higher profile work such as the remake of The Killers and Madigan. His fruitful partnership with Clint Eastwood gave us Dirty Harry and Escape from Alcatraz, among others. Another of his finest 1970s films was Charley Varrick.

Siegel had small acting roles in Play Misty for Me and Philip Kaufman's Invasion of the Body Snatchers - he had directed the classic original in the 1950s.

 
Review Comments (0)


Untitled 1

Login
  Username:
 
  Password:
 
   
 
Forgotten your details? Enter email address in Username box and click Reminder. Your details will be emailed to you.
   

Latest Poll
Which star do you think makes the best coffee?
Emma Stone
Anna Kendrick
Michelle Rodriguez
Sir Patrick Stewart
   
 
   

Recent Visitors
  Desbris M
Graeme Clark
Andrew Pragasam
Paul Shrimpton
  Rachel Franke
Enoch Sneed
  Derrick Smith
Darren Jones
   

 

Last Updated: