Sam Peckinpah’s Convoy starts out as Smokey and the Bandit, segues into either Moby Dick or Les Miserables, and ends in the usual script confusion and disarray, the whole stew peppered with the vulgar excess of random truck crashes and miscellaneous destruction. Kris Kristofferson stars as a likeable roustabout who accidentally becomes a folk hero, while Ali MacGraw recycles about three formula reactions throughout her nothing part.
B.W.L. Norton gets writing credit using C.W. McCall’s c&w poptune lyric as a basis. No matter. Peckinpah’s films display common elements and clumsy analogies, overwhelmed with logistical fireworks and drunken changes of dramatic emphasis.
This time around, Kristofferson (who, miraculously, seems to survive these banalities) is a trucker whose longtime nemesis, speed-trap-blackmailer cop Ernest Borgnine, pursues him with a vengeance through what appears to be three states. Every few minutes there’s some new roadblock to run, alternating with pithy comments on The Meaning Of It All. There’s a whole lot of nothing going on here.