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The Eiger Sanction (1975)

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A classical art professor and collector, who doubles as a professional assassin, is coerced out of retirement to avenge the murder of an old friend.

Director:

Clint Eastwood

Writers:

Hal Dresner (screenplay), Warren Murphy (screenplay) (as Warren B. Murphy) | 2 more credits »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Clint Eastwood ... Jonathan Hemlock
George Kennedy ... Ben Bowman
Vonetta McGee ... Jemima Brown
Jack Cassidy ... Miles Mellough
Heidi Brühl ... Mrs. Montaigne (as Heidi Bruhl)
Thayer David ... Dragon
Reiner Schöne ... Freytag (as Reiner Schoene)
Michael Grimm Michael Grimm ... Meyer
Jean-Pierre Bernard Jean-Pierre Bernard ... Montaigne
Brenda Venus Brenda Venus ... George
Gregory Walcott ... Pope
Candice Rialson ... Art Student
Elaine Shore Elaine Shore ... Miss Cerberus
Dan Howard Dan Howard ... Dewayne
Jack Kosslyn ... Reporter
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Storyline

Jonathan Hemlock is an art history professor and collector who finances his hobby by performing the odd sanction (assassination) for an obscure government bureau. He is forced to take a case where he must find out which of the members of a mountain climbing team is the Russian killer he has been given as a target by joining an expedition to climb the treacherous Eiger. Written by John Vogel <jlvogel@comcast.net>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

HIS LIFELINE - held by the assassin he hunted. See more »

Genres:

Action | Crime | Thriller

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English | German

Release Date:

21 May 1975 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Eiger Sanction See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$9,000,000 (estimated)

Gross USA:

$14,200,000, 31 December 1975
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Westrex Recording System)

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.39 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

This shoot marked the last time that anyone was allowed to climb the "Totem Pole" in Monument Valley, Arizona. In return for permission to film there, climbers with the production had to remove all of the pitons, which had accumulated from years of climbing, on their way down. See more »

Goofs

(at around 44 mins) When Montaigne gets hit in the head and goes dead weight, his taught rope suddenly gets slack in Hemlock's grip. See more »

Quotes

Dr. Jonathan Hemlock: [to his class] Some of you will continue in your education. Some of you will continue with your interest in art. Some of you will have interests other than that. If we've learned nothing else this year, I hope you've learned the stupidity of the statement that art belongs to the world. 'Cause art belongs to the cultivated who can appreciate it. The majority of the great unwashed does not fit into this category... and neither, I'm sorry to say, do most of you.
See more »

Alternate Versions

An early cut of the movie showed, in detail, a man slitting Henri Bach's throat, reaching in, and retrieving microfilm that he had just swallowed. This was deemed too graphic, so the scene was edited to its current version. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Mystery Science Theater 3000: The Painted Hills (1993) See more »

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User Reviews

Another "forgotten" Eastwood that deserves more attention
10 December 2002 | by bogdanovichSee all my reviews

As a die-hard Clint Eastwood fan you've probably seen this spy/action/thriller already, but for those who only now discover the work of this great director/actor, check it out - it's well worth it.

This film was made in the mid-seventies and it shows in every frame. The decidedly non-political correctness in the scenes with the obviously gay guy, portrayed by Jack Cassidy (whose lapdog is appropriately named "faggot" and has a hilarious scene humping Eastwood's leg); with the Indian girl (Eastwoods laconic snarl "Screw Marlon Brando" is unforgettable); with the "black chick" (says Eastwood to the Afro-American actress Vonetta McGee) might turn off some of today's viewers or bring the film on the map for viewers who have grown up with Rap Music and consider the occasional four-letter word in "8 Mile" already daring.

The story itself is not really important (a classic spy/action thriller with a twist) but the camera direction is superb and Eastwood's well-known love for Jazz music seaps through occasionally. Today's movies are called movies for a reason - they are no longer "films" (like this one), where time is taken to tell a story and explore it in its own leisure fashion.


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