A deeply-disturbed priest goes on a murderous night-time rampage across America's highways.
A deeply-disturbed priest goes on a murderous night-time rampage across America's highways.
Two cars will enter and only one will leave. You can file this under Nighttime Highway vibes a la downtempo synth or as nomenclature would put it, “a communion of stylized paranoia.”
Freeway is a conventionalized TV movie-type of cascading neon lights, highway signs and capacitively smooth sax. A time period of driving late, coming home from a party, and tuning into Loveline. You’re listening to dudes complain about their sexual problems on the radio, driving past lonely strangers, and beating the pavement to get home when something goes terribly wrong. There’s only the blinding double lights in the rear view, but they’ve been following you for awhile. What do they want? Are they tailing you? Or are you…
I bought this on vhs for $2 about 19 years ago when the family owned video store had a going out of business sale because the 164,774th blockbuster opened up in my town. Finally got around to watching it last night lol.
A priest goes nutso and starts wiping people out on the highway. Billy Drago, Richard Belzer, and Clint Howard (who can’t stop talking about eggs) showing up, plus there’s a shitload of Lethal Weapon sax going on up in here.
My memory of this from late-night cable was the ultimate city nightmare, a paranoid neon fantasy laced with Catholic guilt, drowning in urban sleaze and misogyny. But turns out I was mixing it up with FEAR CITY, to which this can't really compare despite the tantalizing presence of not only James Russo but also Billy Drago as a scripture-quoting spree killer. Gets agreeably weird towards the end, but ultimately there's no myth here, no oppressive squalor, no death wish, no moral decay, only junk targets like talk radio and the occasional pervert.
If you want sleazy horror-thriller with religious trappings that seem to be more about a feel than any sort of statement, tune in to listen to Richard Belser's pre-Homicide smarm and snark, because everything else is pretty much standard. Darkness and highways could look better than this, eerier and more menacing, but they're trying. Also, at no point does this film evoke the obvious, and I find that disappointing. Still, the final say is had by the right person, I think, and there's more than one moment of tension. Also, everyone in this is skeevy.
The greatness of this will most likely be lost on anyone who hasn't read the 1978 novel Freeway by Deanne Barkley, which follows a scattering of different dysfunctional people living in an LA gripped by unending paranoia in the wake of a sharpshooter roaming the freeways late at night. The mystery of the killer's identity is sidelined and his eventual reveal at the end of the novel is almost treated like a joke, because the focus is more on a vision of the world where everyone lives in constant fear and distress and things asymptotically disintegrate. Almost entirely dialogue and characterization, it doesn't offer any straightforward answers about the bleak state of affairs and leaves ample room for the reader…
Man, I miss Billy Drago. Truly one of those actors that could make playing the bad guy look so cool.
Well, it features Clint Howard in a small role as a sleaze bag who compares women to eggs.
Exploiting 80s road rage murders in LA, Freeway is a thriller that follows a religious extremist manifesting his fantasies of an exterminating angel against the immoral citizens of Los Angeles, a modern day Sodom. Wanting justice for her boyfriend/husband's murder, a nurse (?) (darlanne fluegel) turns private eye as she tries to track the killer down by badgering a useless police force and a reluctant radio DJ (Richard Belzer) in addition to an unhinged former cop out for his own vengeance (Billy Drago).
Clint Howard playing true-to-type as a creepy pervert auto mechanic, dropping disgusting double entendres on Darlanne Fluegel while she's waiting to get her car fixed is just *chef's kiss* Creepy Clint even leaves a cassette of a…
I ordered this movie by mistake, thinking it was the other FREEWAY with Kiefer Sutherland and Reece Witherspoon. Knew nothing about this one but watched it since I now own it lol.
Some potential, but never exceeds at anything. A religious fanatic is committing homicides on the LA freeways while calling in to an evening talk radio host. The police seem impotent, so 2 people with scores to settle try to track the maniac down themselves.
There’s a lot of things this movie could have been had it been more ambitious. The men are all creepy and toxic, including Clint Howard as a pervy mechanic. The intent seems to be a thematic parallel to the sin-obsessed killer. Nothing really gels…
Blu-ray - Kino Lorber
A missionary serial killer is gunning down motorists randomly because he believes God is going to come down to the four level interchange and pass judgement on humanity. One of those L.A. movies where the freeway is the root of all evil.
Remember when people shot each other on the L.A. freeways? Those were the days. This effective little thriller plays like a time capsule today.
The seeds of a good movie are here. The best scene (and there’s only one) is of Fluegel, Russo and Belzer interacting but even there the tension between Russo and Belzer seems unearned. The introduction of the characters in the first third of the movie is slow and disjointed and their connections don’t really make a lot of sense. Drago’s face isn’t revealed until the climax but there was no point in keeping his image a secret since we don’t even know who he is. It’s a shame too because he knocks it out of the park in the finale. This movie could’ve worked with a better script and stylish directing but it’s ultimately a disappointment over what could’ve been.…
Standard serial killer thriller with dark almost-noirish atmosphere. I don't know what it is about night time scenes in 80s films but they are by far the coolest out of any decade.
Inwhich Billy Drago is a scripture quoting, serial highway killer with a Zodiac-esq thirst for notoriety being tracked by a burnout cop and a hysterical victim. Will they stop him? Yes. Just before the credits, duh, but entertaining enough just the same.
This had a solid cast and a wild premise of a "freeway killer" but I really wanted this to push some more boundaries and go the extra mile on the insanity. With that said, when you are casting a psychotic priest-turned-freeway killer, you call Billy Drago.
This movie is perfectly cast: the goddess Darlanne Fluegel as Nancy Drew-meets-Dirty Harry, James Russo doing a hilarious Mickey Rourke impression, the Belz as Dark Frasier Crane, Clint Howard as grown up Booger from Revenge of the Nerds, and Billy Drago as Billy Drago. Lot of fun all around.
An evil priest drives around LA shooting commuters on the freeway and calling into Richard Belzer’s pop-psychology radio show as he does it. Darlene Fluegel plays a dogged doctor slash amateur investigator who lost her boyfriend to the killer, and (as is typically the case) is a better investigator than the actual cops. There’s also a loose cannon bounty hunter who gets involved in the case, and involved sexually with Fluegel. Billy drago plays the evil priest, who we see mostly in close up shots of eyes and raising then firing revolvers.
Don’t know if it’s apparent, but this is a pretty ridiculous and violent picture. Watched it in my room under my weighted blanket, but probably would’ve been better enjoyed in a basement or some other such place with a small batch of friends.
appropriate follow up viewing to Payback (1995) since both were overshadowed by movies sharing their title a few years after they came out. the focus on prominently featuring Drago's inherent creep features are so striking I wish Tscherkassky or Martin Arnold would use those close ups of his eyes and ears for one of their structuralist work outs.
Are psychiatrist disc jockeys still a thing
Billy Drago takes a break from being thrown off a building in The Untouchables to drive around LA shooting people on the freeway and calling into Richard Belzers radio show to spout apocalyptic Biblical nonsense.
I really appreciated how as the film progressed his guns got bigger and bigger until at the end he just whips out a bazooka.
Grubby, loosely plotted thriller/horror about a religious nut who shoots SO so many people on the freeway before anyone even seems to notice. An interesting watch today because the cops are basically bystanders, seemingly unimpressed by the staggering body count all the way until the end. Of course it’s up to a burned out ex-cop, current nurse and radio host Dick Belzer to take the freak down. Nothing to write home about but it delivers the basic goods, looks great and did I mention Billy Drago is the nut? BILLY DRAGO IS THE NUT.
Viewed in 1988. Violent crime drama with Reese and Kiefer.
Director Francis Delia was aiming for a gritty serial killer on the LA highways kind of movie, but his skills were limited and he can't quite seal the deal. There are some great action sequences and some pretty photography of Los Angeles at night, but the script and acting are kind of a wreck. His leading lady Darlanne Flugel is actually fine, and she holds the thing together for the most part: Her husband is killed on the highway by a car-to-car shooter (Billy Drago), and she's haunted by a killer on the loose. The police are asleep at the wheel, so she does the work of tracking him down herself. Meanwhile, talk radio jockey Richard Belzer is talking with…
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