William Devane

Rolling Thunder

This week, Cargill and I call down the thunder. Specifically, we discuss one of our absolute favorite exploitation revenge films from the 1970s: Rolling Thunder. Written by Paul Schrader (Taxi Driver, Raging Bull) pens this incredibly subversive Vietnam War parable about a man pushed back into a life of violence when his triumphant return form a POW camp is interrupted by a thieving group of good ol’ boys/murders. Cargill and I chat about the baser satisfactions of this revenge movie, as well as the legitimately brilliant performances from William Devane and Tommy Lee Jones, and the intriguing religious allegory of the film’s intensely layered script. That, plus…you know, Sam Peckinpah-worthy shoot-outs. You should follow Brian (@Briguysalisbury), Cargill (@Massawyrm), and the show (@Junkfoodcinema). Download Episode #8 Directly


Rolling Thunder 6.tif

Cult movies are impossible to identify until years after their release, and even then it apparently takes Quentin Tarantino to point them out to the rest of us. (That’s not entirely true, but we’ll let him think it is for now.) One of the director’s favorite films, possibly even *the* favorite depending who you ask, is John Flynn‘s 1977 revenge picture Rolling Thunder. Having finally watched it I’d actually argue that labeling it as a “revenge picture,” which is how it’s been spoken of for over thirty years, is incorrect and ultimately reductive. Not that there isn’t some wonderfully wet and violent revenge action to be found here, but it’s hardly the film’s main focus or only strength. William Devane stars as a Vietnam veteran recently released from years as a POW. He returns home to a wife, son and a small town that welcomes him back as a hero, but when he attracts the attention of some mean-spirited and desperate ruffians it leads to an assault that leaves him and his family for dead. Amateurs. He survives, but his wife, son and right hand aren’t as lucky. So yeah, there’s some revenge coming.


The Dark (1979)

Welcome back to Junkfood Cinema… The more astute among you (and possibly Jeff H Hall too) may have already noticed something a bit different about this week’s installment. But for the slower readers, it comes with a heavy heart and empty stomach that I have to report the following news. I am not Brian Salisbury. I know. It came as a shock to me as well.


For the sixth excursion into CTU, Jack is sprung from a Chinese prison as a negotiating tool for terrorists. And this is a good thing, too.

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published: 12.23.2014
published: 12.22.2014
published: 12.19.2014

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