HOME |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
 
Newest Reviews
Beast and the Magic Sword, The
Last Hard Men, The
Found Footage Phenomenon, The
Night Trap
Skinny Tiger, Fatty Dragon
Benediction
Nezha Reborn
Evil Toons
Worst Person in the World, The
Whirlpool
Hunter Will Get You
Superman/Batman: Apocalypse
Revolver
Men, The
Parallel Mothers
Sadness, The
Bloody New Year
Faye
Body Count
Spider-Man: No Way Home
'Round Midnight
Wild Men
Barry & Joan
Wake Up Punk
Twin, The
Wheel of Fortune and Fantasy
One of These Days
Lift to the Scaffold
Savage Dawn
Rest in Pieces
Innocents in Paris
We're All Going to the World's Fair
Beyond the Door 3
Jules et Jim
Love Jones
Saint-Narcisse
Souvenir Part II, The
Knockabout
400 Blows, The
Virus: 32
   
 
Newest Articles
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
The Punk Rock Movie: Out of the Blue on Blu-ray
Yeah, Too Quiet: The Great Silence on Blu-ray
   
 
  Breakheart Pass Stop That Train
Year: 1975
Director: Tom Gries
Stars: Charles Bronson, Ben Johnson, Richard Crenna, Jill Ireland, Charles Durning, Ed Lauter, Bill McKinney, David Huddleston, Roy Jenson, Rayford Barnes, Scott Newman, Robert Tessier, Joe Kapp, Archie Moore, Sally Kirkland, Sally Kemp, Eddie Little Sky
Genre: WesternBuy from Amazon
Rating:  5 (from 1 vote)
Review: The late nineteenth century and there's a train carrying soldiers travelling across the frozen West. It has stopped to collect water for the engine at an outpost, and the passengers include a governor (Richard Crenna) and his charge, Marica (Jill Ireland). Also on board is the Marshall (Ben Johnson) and when he goes for a drink in the local tavern, he overhears a poker game that is causing an argument thanks to the cheating of one John Deakin (Charles Bronson), who it turns out is a man wanted by the law. The Marshall promptly arrests him and takes him aboard a train that will soon be struck with mystery... and danger.

Breakheart Pass was scripted by the Scottish adventure writer Alistair MacLean, whose books were huge sellers in his day but now are oddly neglected. While this one didn't reach the heights of his The Guns of Navarone or Where Eagles Dare, either in popularity or entertainment value, it was still a very decent western, even if it did seem to have been written by Agatha Christie rather than MacLean. Christie, however, would not have been so keen to leave so much unexplained by the conclusion as is the case here.

Additionally, this film was made at the height of Charles Bronson's stardom, in America at least - he had been a big star in Europe for around a decade by this point, being much of that continent's favourite American tough guy. Not to be confused with Breakout, also made that year and directed by Tom Gries too, this was a slightly better film although it could well result in you scratching your head by the end wondering who did what to whom as the filmmakers were content to allow the plot to keep its conundrums for the sake of letting the forward momentum carry on its journey.

While you're watching it, however, there's no denying that it's an intriguing movie, and thanks to some excellent photography, the snowbound landscape really places the characters in isolation as the bodies mount up. Only a small number of the them are who they claim to be, and of course Deakin has more than cards up his sleeve as we find out when he transpires to have medical experience, useful when the doctor (David Huddleston) is killed, and skill with explosives and most importantly, detection as well. Who is this guy?

Fortunately that's one question we are offered the answer to, but before that we have to be puzzled by the deaths that are occuring. The train is ostensibly heading towards a military base that is suffering under a diptheria epidemic, yet when we see scenes of the place there seems to be some kind of siege there, with ne'erdowells ordering the soldiers about. Meanwhile, on the train the number of passengers is being drastically reduced, mainly thanks to someone breaking the connection between the carriages holding the soldiers and the rest of them, leading them to plunge to their deaths. Who would do such a thing? Search me, we never find out. Breakheart Pass passes the time divertingly, but is perhaps best recommended to steam locomotive enthusiasts: there are plenty of scenic shots of that classic vehicle rumbling along the tracks. Music by Jerry Goldsmith, a very fine score.
Reviewer: Graeme Clark

 

This review has been viewed 4763 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

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

 

Last Updated: