91. The Taking of Pelham 123 (1974)

Sorry for the double posts here, but I wanted to get this in today. I managed to squeeze in a viewing of the original Taking of Pelham 123, which I had not seen before. I liked it quite a bit.

Going off my memory of the remake, I like the original better, but I can’t be 100 percent on that. I did enjoy the remake when I saw it in theaters.

I was actually surprised by the cast in this movie. After I started watching it, there were a lot of names and faces that I recognized. Walter Matthau, Robert Shaw, Martin Balsam, Hector Elizondo (who I couldn’t figure out for most of the movie which drove me nuts), Dick O’Neil, and Jerry Stiller. The acting was superb I think. I enjoyed Shaw as the leader of the heist crew more than Travolta. Matthau and Washington were just too different to bother comparing. Both were also good.

The movies are similar enough from my memory. There are a lot of tropes of similar movies of the 70s here, which is nothing new. I felt like the pacing was really good. There was a nice balance between the build up and finish. It wasn’t one of those films where you spend an hour building up to the heist and then pull the heist off in a few short minutes and the film ends. Nice exchange of exposition and action. It’s a pretty simple premise as well. Things don’t get overtly complicated and confusing to the point where you spend most of the movie and a few weeks afterwards trying to figure out what the hell happened. I mean it’s not overtly complicated as far as figuring out what the outcome is. Most people should be smarter than the characters in the film.

I’m a fan of movies from the 70s like this. I should probably actually pay more attention and analyze the particular aspects about the films that I like, but there is just something in the formula there that is nice. Same with the comedy films of the late 70’s and 80s.

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Posted on May 15, 2011, in Movies. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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