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Canada, 1973 (MIFF 1974)

Director: Donald Shebib

Originally titled Get Back, this Canadian film, directed by Donald Shebib, explores the tensions and rivalries between members of a gang planning an armed robbery. Five people come together to carry out the crime, but dissension, sexual intrigue and even death break up the partnership.

Will and Coker work in a nickel smelting plant north of Toronto, where they plan to snatch the payroll. Their group includes Ellie, Will's daughter, her boy-friend Chino, and a friend of his, Toby, who drifts in from surf-board riding in California. Immediately, though, things start to go wrong. The hero falls in love with his friend's girl; the old man, Coker, dies, and a feud develops between the two young men.

But the four of them stick to their original plan, despite the pressures that have broken the group apart. So their attempt at a final solution moves into its last, desperate act.

'There are several superlative performances; Shebib and his scriptwriter further flesh out the crime-doesn't-pay formula by allowing their small-time hoods to function only as individuals, and by treating their quirks and foibles with a rare degree of unsentimental humanism; and the images of the snow-bound robbery transcend even the ending of Losey's The Criminal in their bleak, suggestive power.'

Jan Dawson, Sight and Sound

See also...


Canada, 1976
In Don Shebib's first film since Between Friends, he focuses on the life and career of a successful young stockbroker. Roger, who is thirty, has just been made vice-president of his brokerage firm. H… More »

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