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STEVE MCQUEEN LITERALLY STEALS SAM PECKINPAH'S 'THE GETAWAY'

Ali McGraw & Steve McQueen Year: 1972 Rating: ****

The machine-pounding prologue/montage of Sam Peckinpah's THE GETAWAY embodies caged hopelessness of prison life better than most entirely-set-in-prison prison flicks... plus it's the only sequence centered solely on Steve McQueen as career criminal Doc McCoy sans the uninspired acting of ingenue/partner Ali MacGraw...

During a pivotal meeting — tempted by Texas millionaire Ben Johnson after having sex to get Doc paroled and then tortured with envy — she has a vacant expression as opposed to McQueen's sharpened countenance...

Meanwhile, GODFATHER villain Al Letteri (initially partnered with a cocky, trigger-happy Bo Hopkins) would have perfectly contrasted against McQueen, only Al also gets burdened by a screeching Sally Struthers as Letteri's veterinarian's wife turned traveling gun moll — all the characters on a post bank-heist GETAWAY (including the posse of crooked Texas businessman) in a road movie that, despite the flaws, is loaded with classic Peckinpah slow-motion gunfights, fistfights, slap-fights, car chases, cars exploding and a gritty aesthetic best described as classic 1950's Film Noir B&W soaked into 1970's brick-red, cash-green, burnt-brown, pallid-blue, dusk-yellow, faded-gray exploitation... Yeah, that'll do.  

Steve McQueen in the prison opening of THE GETAWAY
Steve McQueen in the prison opening of THE GETAWAY
Steve McQueen in the prison opening of THE GETAWAY
Steve McQueen in the prison opening of THE GETAWAY
Bo Hopkins as yet another Peckinpah wild card in THE GETAWAY
Steve McQueen in THE GETAWAY with Ali MacGraw
Steve McQueen in THE GETAWAY with Al Bright
Steve McQueen as Doc McCoy in THE GETAWAY
Steve McQueen as Doc McCoy in THE GETAWAY
Steve McQueen as Doc McCoy in THE GETAWAY with Ali MacGraw
Sally Struthers hungers for Al Lettieri in THE GETAWAY
Steve McQueen as Doc McCoy in THE GETAWAY
Steve McQueen as Doc McCoy in THE GETAWAY with Ali McGraw
Al Lettieri and Bo Hopkins in THE GETAWAY
Steve McQueen as Doc McCoy in THE GETAWAY
Steve McQueen as Doc McCoy in THE GETAWAY with Ali McGraw
Sam Peckinpah showing children intrigued by violence again in THE GETAWAY
A better autograph and personality than performance for THE GETAWAY
No doubt of the very naturally gorgeous Ali MacGraw in THE GETAWAY
You can count on STEVE McQUEEN as Doc McCoy in THE GETAWAY
Steve McQueen backs off Doc's THE GETAWAY on-the-run fame

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