HOME |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
 
Newest Reviews
Morfalous, Les
Dreambuilders
Everything Went Fine
Lux AEterna
Rum Runners
Fairy and the Devil, The
Mad God
Outside the Law
I Remember Mama
Superman Unbound
Lawrence of Belgravia
House Across the Lake, The
Wonder Park
Hornsby e Rodriguez
Operation Mincemeat
5 Kung Fu Daredevil Heroes
Scoob!
Earwig
Offseason
Peau Douce, La
Double Indemnity
Na Cha and the Seven Devils
Deep Murder
Superman vs. the Elite
Adam Project, The
Osamu Tezuka's Last Mystery of the 20th Century
Horse, La
Buffaloed
Train Robbers, The
Let Sleeping Cops Lie
Abominable
Funeral, The
Burning Sea, The
Godzilla Singular Point
Ace of Aces
Innocents, The
Beast and the Magic Sword, The
Last Hard Men, The
Found Footage Phenomenon, The
Night Trap
   
 
Newest Articles
3 From Arrow Player: Sweet Sugar, Girls Nite Out and Manhattan Baby
Little Cat Feat: Stephen King's Cat's Eye on 4K UHD
La Violence: Dobermann at 25
Serious Comedy: The Wrong Arm of the Law on Blu-ray
DC Showcase: Constantine - The House of Mystery and More on Blu-ray
Monster Fun: Three Monster Tales of Sci-Fi Terror on Blu-ray
State of the 70s: Play for Today Volume 3 on Blu-ray
The Movie Damned: Cursed Films II on Shudder
The Dead of Night: In Cold Blood on Blu-ray
Suave and Sophisticated: The Persuaders! Take 50 on Blu-ray
Your Rules are Really Beginning to Annoy Me: Escape from L.A. on 4K UHD
A Woman's Viewfinder: The Camera is Ours on DVD
Chaplin's Silent Pursuit: Modern Times on Blu-ray
The Ecstasy of Cosmic Boredom: Dark Star on Arrow
A Frosty Reception: South and The Great White Silence on Blu-ray
You'll Never Guess Which is Sammo: Skinny Tiger and Fatty Dragon on Blu-ray
Two Christopher Miles Shorts: The Six-Sided Triangle/Rhythm 'n' Greens on Blu-ray
Not So Permissive: The Lovers! on Blu-ray
Uncomfortable Truths: Three Shorts by Andrea Arnold on MUBI
The Call of Nostalgia: Ghostbusters Afterlife on Blu-ray
Moon Night - Space 1999: Super Space Theater on Blu-ray
Super Sammo: Warriors Two and The Prodigal Son on Blu-ray
Sex vs Violence: In the Realm of the Senses on Blu-ray
What's So Funny About Brit Horror? Vampira and Bloodbath at the House of Death on Arrow
Keeping the Beatles Alive: Get Back
   
 
  Evel Knievel Keep On Jumpin'
Year: 1971
Director: Marvin J. Chomsky
Stars: George Hamilton, Sue Lyon, Bert Freed, Rod Cameron, Dub Taylor, Ron Basak, Hal Baylor, Judith Baldwin, Kathrine Bauman, Ben Bentley
Genre: Action, BiopicBuy from Amazon
Rating:  5 (from 1 vote)
Review: Evel Knievel (George Hamilton) is a man who knows not the meaning of the word "fear", and he has doubts about "impossible" as well. He is preparing for one of his famous daredevil motorcycle stunts, and because he has performed them before he is aware they can have serious consequences: his many broken bones, quite a few not entirely healed, are testament to that. But as he works up his courage for that next jump, he reflects on his lfe up to this point, from his childhood in Butte, Montana and his brushes with the law as he grew up to his eventual calling as a stunt rider...

Suave and sophisticated George Hamilton might not immediately spring to mind when you consider who would be the best to play the rugged and decidedly non-urbane Evel Knievel in a biopic, yet nevertheless here he was, dressed up in the Stars and Stripes jumpsuit and mounting his Harley Davidson. Not that he performs the stunts, he does do a bit of riding but that's it; he leaves the dangerous stuff to... well, to Knievel, as many of the action sequences are footage of the man himself, leaping trucks and occasionally smashing up his person in predictable fashion, as much of his career played out in that fashion.

Interestingly the script to this was co-written by the much-respected John Milius, and his macho worldview you would think would be ideally complemented by the daredevil's activities but the film appears to be in two minds about the main character. On one hand, he is a loveable rogue, yes he may have broken the law as well as many bones, but he's still a partriot and puts his personal safety on the line whenever he goes out to entertain the masses. There's an element of the broad comedy of The Beverly Hillbillies about the tone of a number of the sequences highlighting this aspect of his personality.

However, there's another side to the regard the filmmakers hold Knievel in, more like, what a self-aggrandising idiot this guy is, forcing his audiences to admire him by placing his life in needless danger, twisting the arms of people who have to buy into his idea of pointless bravery. "I must be great," says this Knievel to us, "look at the peril I place myself in". Well, he doesn't say as much in the film, but that's the impression you get from the manner in which he's presented here, something of a bully in his demeanour and there's a knowing quality of slight insincerity to Hamilton's portrayal even if he doesn't go all out for parody; that said, that might simply have been the star's style.

This version of events is, however, far more easy to swallow than the hero worship of Viva Knievel!, the film that the rider starred in a few years later, although he does make appearances in this: largely falling off his bike and doing himself great injury. The pattern the plotting takes is odd, relying on flashbacks to build up tension to the big jump staged at the grand finale, the somewhat ghoulish question being whether he will die or not. In between we see him romancing his first wife Linda (played by ex-Lolita Sue Lyon) by practically forcing her into going out with him (as in Viva, he drives his bike into a building here), and she appears in the present day parts, worrying but supportive. So is Knievel a Great American Hero on the basis of this? It's hard to say, at least he gave up his former life of crime for showbiz, but to say you have mixed feelings about him after watching this is an understatement. Music by Pat Williams.
Reviewer: Graeme Clark

 

This review has been viewed 5026 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

 
Review Comments (2)


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 probably has psychic powers?
Laurence Fishburne
Nicolas Cage
Anya Taylor-Joy
Patrick Stewart
Sissy Spacek
Michelle Yeoh
Aubrey Plaza
Tom Cruise
Beatrice Dalle
Michael Ironside
   
 
   

Recent Visitors
Darren Jones
Andrew Pragasam
Graeme Clark
Enoch Sneed
Mary Sibley
  Desbris M
  Sheila Reeves
Paul Smith
   

 

Last Updated: