Night of the Juggler is a relentlessly preposterous picture which never gives its cast a chance to overcome director Robert Butler’s passion for mindless action.
This is supposed to be the story [from a novel by William P. McGivern] of James Brolin’s frantic pursuit of a kidnapper who grabs his daughter and takes off with her in a car.
But who cares if the performers are never allowed to make the characters come true?
As a frustrated, racist psychotic seeking revenge for the deterioration of his Bronx neighborhood, Cliff Gorman is trapped by the script’s needs for him to be so loony you might actually believe in him.
Technically each individual shot was approached with intense concentration on the craft of filmmaking. Which is exactly what’s wrong with the picture.
Night of the Juggler
Columbia. Director Robert Butler; Producer Jay Weston; Screenplay Bill Norton Sr, Rick Natkin; Camera Victor J. Kemper; Editor Argyle Nelson; Music Artie Kane; Art Director Stuart Wurtzel
(Color) Available on VHS. Extract of a review from 1980. Running time: 100 MIN.
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