Conflict between police sleuthing and political expediency is the essence of Bullitt, an extremely well-made crime melodrama [from Robert L. Pike's novel Mute Witness] filmed in Frisco. Steve McQueen delivers a very strong performance as a detective seeking a man whom Robert Vaughn, ambitious politico, would exploit for selfish motives. Good scripting and excellent direction by Peter Yates maintain deliberately low-key but mounting suspense.
Conflict between police sleuthing and political expediency is the essence of Bullitt, an extremely well-made crime melodrama [from Robert L. Pike’s novel Mute Witness] filmed in Frisco. Steve McQueen delivers a very strong performance as a detective seeking a man whom Robert Vaughn, ambitious politico, would exploit for selfish motives. Good scripting and excellent direction by Peter Yates maintain deliberately low-key but mounting suspense.
Arrival in Frisco of a Chi hood cues assignment of McQueen, plus assistants Don Gordon and Carol Reindel, to protect his life until headline-hunting Vaughn produces him dramatically before a senate crime committee. Hood’s death, at the hands of Paul Genge, provokes the primary dramatic conflict: Vaughn wants a live witness, while McQueen is interested in apprehending the killer.
Simon Oakland, McQueen’s superior, lets him pursue the case independently, while Vaughn, with aid from another senior detective, Norman Fell, is after independent sleuth’s scalp.
1968: Best Editing.
Nomination: Best Sound
Solar/Warner. Director Peter Yates; Producer Philip D'Antoni; Screenplay Alan R. Trustman, Harry Kleiner; Camera William A. Fraker; Editor Frank P. Keller; Music Lalo Schifrin; Art Director Albert Brenner
(Color) Available on VHS, DVD. Extract of a review from 1968. Running time: 113 MIN.
Popular on Variety
Comedy Showrunners on the Impact of the WGA Staffing Boost
Showrunners on the Realities of Writing: ‘It’s A Continual Cycle of Panic and Fear, It’s Super Fun’
Chris Hemsworth Responds to the 'Avengers: Endgame' Fat-Shaming Thor Controversy
Hilary Duff and Sutton Foster Proud That 'Younger' Flaunts Women's Careers Over Romance
'Deadwood' Designer Janie Bryant Used Original 1880s Dress for HBO Movie
'Big Little Lies': Can Season 2 Live Up to the First?
Richard Madden is Done Playing Romeo
Actors on Actors: Sarah Paulson & Tracee Ellis Ross (Full Video)
Actors on Actors: Taraji P. Henson & Ellen Pompeo (Full Video)
Julia Roberts on ‘Pretty Woman’s’ Original Violent Ending
A presentation at the Shanghai International Film Festival on Sunday shed light on the welter of propaganda films that will compete with Hollywood blockbusters for the attention of Chinese cinema goers in the second half of this year. This year is laden with political significance for China’s ruling Communist Party. It is 100 years since [...]
Hong Kong’s Tony Leung Chiu-wai and mainland China’s Duan Yihong will head the cast of the Shanghai Film Group’s upcoming “Fox Hunt.” The film is based on real live events and depicts the activities of Operation Fox Hunt, a worldwide anti-corruption initiative managed by China’s Ministry of Public Security. The operation seeks to find and [...]
“Wings over Everest,” a new action adventure film from veteran producer Terence Chang and “Wolf Warrior 2” producer Lu Jianmin, is poised to join the burgeoning Chinese sub-genre of rescue movies. The Chinese- and English-language film stars Chinese actress Zhang Jingchu (“Project Gutenberg”; “Mission Impossible: Rogue Nation”), Japanese actor Koji Yakusho (“Babel”; “Memoirs of a [...]
Huayi Brothers Pictures CEO and media group VP Jerry Ye made no mention Sunday of the abrupt cancellation of the premiere for his firm’s highly anticipated war epic “The Eight Hundred,” which was set to be the Shanghai Intl. Film Festival’s opening film the night before. Instead, he looked to the future at a panel [...]
Leading film producers highlighted the challenges of developing good scripts in China and abroad at a panel during the Shanghai International Film Festival on Sunday. Wanda Media GM Jiang Wei (aka Wayne Jiang) recommended that producers remain aware of the real differences between the scriptwriting process for Chinese productions versus international and co-productions. The fundamental [...]
At a panel on indie film production at the Shanghai Intl. Film Festival, Chinese and foreign producers discussed the shifting funding landscape for their projects over the years. Nai An, the longtime collaborator of controversial sixth generation Chinese filmmaker Lou Ye, kicked off the talk with a look back at her producing career, which has [...]
Like a slow-acting hallucinogen, Chinese director Yang Pingdao’s audaciously strange and sorrowful feature debut works its magic so gradually that it’s with a slight surprise that halfway through you glance down and realize you’re high off the social-realist ground, suspended surreally in the air. At first a gritty tale of feckless men abandoning their families [...]