SITTING TARGET (1972)

sitting-target
From the screenwriter of Point Blank comes a film featuring what is essentially the same character from that film but this time played by the much more badass Oliver Reed (which is quite a feat seeing as Point Blank starred Lee Marvin).

There are no nice characters in Sitting Target, it’s based in a world of criminality and betrayal and doesn’t waste the audiences time trying to show any kind of moral justice. Reed’s character starts the film seeming strangely calm and content as he’s about to begin a 15-year jail sentence for a botched robbery. He lovingly tells his wife how grateful he is that she plans on waiting for him to get out. Much to his dismay she tells him that not only was she not waiting, she’d already found a new man, was pregnant with his child and wanted a divorce immediately. Reed’s character immediately explodes; as you can imagine being the hardened criminal that he was he was not going stand for her supposed betrayal. If he didn’t have his beautiful woman waiting for him when he got out he wasn’t going to bother waiting at all. The rest of the film involves him enacting the revenge plot he concocted in the few months before his inevitable escape from prison; not only was he going to kill his wife and her new beau but he would also get back much of his stolen loot from his former cohorts.

For a movie from 1972 Sitting Target is nuts, the action scenes are extremely well-shot and despite the occasional cheesy looking greenscreening are highly believable. While the middle of the film is a little slow the beginning and end are extremely exciting, the prison escape and climax being the film’s high points. Reed’s character of Harry Lomax is easily one of the most malicious and crazy ones he’s ever played. Despite being seen by many as a Get Carter rip-off I think this film stands perfectly fine on it’s own and remains a highly enjoyable watch.

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