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STANLEY BAKER TRUCKIN' WITH PEGGY CUMMINS IN 'HELL DRIVERS'

Stanley Baker leads THE HELL DRIVERS Year: 1957
With the cheating aid of that kind of sped-up effect used long ago on Keystone Cop shorts, the work trucks for HELL DRIVERS picks up granite and races it back to the factory as quickly as possible... at breakneck speed taking neck-breaking curves... and newly hired ex con Stanley Baker catches on that he's not very wanted... That is, the boss wants him fast, but not too fast...

In particular, to never beat the high score of antagonist Patrick McGoohan, looking like a severe pirate with a cocky grin behind the wheel, and this whole lot is a truly wild bunch that includes a young Sean Connery... and the only friend of Baker's square-jawed strong-silent-type is Italian romantic Herbert Lom, smitten with secretary Peggy Cummins, who's into the new guy instead.

Stanley Baker and Peggy Cummins in HELL DRIVERS Rating: ***1/2
The first half is the most entertaining, before all the racing around has reason to slow down: not only the overall pace but the suspense of that personal feud/race between polar opposites. Once Baker learns how the factory's taking advantage of the workers there's not much left but the usual fist fight and intentionally predictable truck chase...

If only they'd stuck more on Baker vs McGoohan earlier on, without the distractions on how the gang parties after hours, or the sullen background into Baker's family (including crippled bro David McCallum, who married Jill Ireland, as a waitress here, in real life). The thing is, there's enough Noir-like intrigue during daylight hours at work, so the action and drama should have stayed there longer to flesh out what's really matters.
Stanley Baker and Herbert Lom in HELL DRIVERS
Stanley Baker and Patrick McGoohan in HELL DRIVERS
Sean Connery and Patrick McGoohan in HELL DRIVERS
Patrick McGoohan in HELL DRIVERS
Stanley Baker and Jill Ireland in HELL DRIVERS
Stanley Baker in HELL DRIVERS
Stanley Baker and David McCallum in HELL DRIVERS
Peggy Cummins in HELL DRIVERS
Hell Drivers trucking in fast motion
Stanley Baker with Sean Connery in HELL DRIVERS 
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