I, the Jury

Film

Thrillers

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Time Out says

Apart from Aldrich's extraordinary Kiss Me Deadly, the blood-and-guts thrillers of Mickey Spillane have not translated well to cinema. This adaptation delivers more sex and violence than ever before, and Assante plays Mike Hammer in a shambling Italian style, pleasingly reminiscent of De Niro in Mean Streets. But (possibly because Larry Cohen was replaced as director after a week) the film soon becomes repetitious, lacking the overall atmosphere of paranoia that makes Spillane's fictions bearable, and dwelling in a nauseating way (even by the standards of its source material) on sadistic sexual violence. The updated plot concerns sex clinics, post-Watergate cover-ups, and such a multitude of bad guys that even Hammer is only able to despatch about eighty of them. But the modern references just get in the way: as with Ian Fleming, an authentic Spillane adaptation would have to be set in the hysterical atmosphere of the Cold War.
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Release details

UK release:

1981

Duration:

111 mins

Cast and crew

Director:

Richard T Heffron

Cast:

Paul Sorvino, Geoffrey Lewis, Alan King, Laurene Landon, Barbara Carrera, Armand Assante, Judson Scott

Music:

Bill Conti

Production Designer:

Robert Gundlach

Editor:

Garth Craven

Cinematography:

Andrew Laszlo

Screenwriter:

Larry Cohen

Producer:

Robert H Solo

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