As a monetary rater of movies, you can tell that I have leanings. My film studies background is rooted in films noir and gritty westerns and at heart, The Getaway is a pulp crime drama with a southwestern flavor. Of course I love it; there’s a heist, a duel, a shootout, a con and every other genre staple that I’ve written about before (not to mention it played a pivotal role in my graduating thesis). It’s true that these details ingratiate the film to me, but it’s also true that The Getaway is a fantastic film. It’s a Steve McQueen movie, after all! That alone makes it a classic and worth watching.
However, it’s the direction by Sam Peckinpah that elevates the film to cinematic extraordinariness, a personal rating of 8.5/10 instead of a seven. In this instance, my film appreciation outranks my boyish genre loves and McQueen man crush. Peckinpah is a master. I’ve stated before and I will state again that Robert Altman is my favorite director, but if I’m ever put in a position where I’m directing a film on my own, it will be Sam Peckinpah that I will mimic most in style. His filmography is one masterpiece followed by another and in my opinion, The Getaway is one of his best.
That’s where my self-proclaimed proficiency in film fandom is either debunked or respectfully ironic. To this day, Sam Peckinpah is considered a brilliant director. However, at the time, critics considered Sam Peckinpah to be a sell out for directing The Getaway. The dark horse, indie, underground director… doing a Steve McQueen movie? It’s the equivalent of Martin Scorsese signing on to direct a Vin Diesel sequel. In other words, it lowered a few opinions of the man and it might lower a few opinions of me to say otherwise.
And it’s true. Peckinpah did, for lack of a better phrase, sell out. He was struggling financially and intentionally set out to make a film that would yield a high profit. By definition, he sold out. However, other connotations of the term do not apply. Peckinpah did not go through the motions. In fact, he pulled out all the stops. Maybe The Getaway wasn’t his magnum opus, but it was his chance to prove to mainstream America that he was more than just an art house filmmaker of gratuitous violence, and that’s exactly what Peckinpah did. He may not have thought so, but I think he nailed it. He created a masterpiece that could be loved by all and I believe, in doing so, he created something worthy of the top Peckinpah DVD shelf alongside the likes of The Wild Bunch.
Written by Zachary Mann
2.06GB | 2h 02m | 1024×440 | mkv
Subtitles:English (+HoH), French, German (+HoH), Italian (+HoH), Spanish, Dutch, Danish, Finnish, Norwegian & Swedish