Today we have a guest post by Peyton Farquhar of Prattle On, Boyo. Point Blank is a classic and one of my long time favorites, so I was thrilled when Peyton offered his own write-up. I hope you enjoy it as much as I did.
Twelve Reasons Why Lee Marvin Kicks Ass in Point Blank
by Peyton Farquhar from Prattle On, Boyo
Based on the novel, The Hunter, written by Richard Stark, Point Blank is a neo-noir flick filmed in 1967 in and around Alcatraz Island, and Los Angeles. It was directed by John Boorman, who is also known for Deliverance and Excalibur.
Lee Marvin (1924 – 1987) plays the lead named simply, “Walker,” which also functions as an apt description of the character, as well. In addition to being known as a film actor whose roles tended to be hard-boiled, Marvin was also a Scout Sniper (Surveillance and Target Acquisition) in the United States Marine Corps during World War II. If you're a law nerd, then it may also interest you to know that Lee Marvin's personal dirty laundry also functioned as the famous starting point for spousal support, which is better known as a Marvin action in contemporary Family Law Court in the State of California.
12. Walker is a loyal friend you can count on to help take out and then hide the bodies afterward.
In the opening segment of the film, Walker and his best bud, Reese (played by John Vernon) are at a crowded event surrounded by drunken party goers in three-piece suits. Reese stumbles towards Walker, knocking him to the ground and pleads with him that he needs his help and will be killed if he doesn't get it. In the next shot, Reese explains that this, meaning Alcatraz, is where “they” make the money drop. All they have to do is just wait and then knock “them” over the head. Walker, dependable friend that he is, agrees.
11. Walker is indestructible.
Betrayed, shot up and bleeding profusely, he manages to swim the 1.5 miles back to civilization in fifty degree water temperatures and dangerous riptides surrounding The Rock. It is because of these same riptides that the island was chosen to be a maximum security penitentiary for Civil War prisoners in 1861, and then later, for civilian prisoners incarcerated by the U.S. Department of Justice in 1933.
10. Walker is personable.
He doesn't punch out the bald headed nutjob on the ferry touring Alcatraz Island with him even though he begins speaking to him from seemingly out of nowhere going on about how Reese took off with his wife, Lynne, and, has hit the big time with the money he screwed Walker out of.
9. Walker doesn't write anything down because he's too cool to forget.
When Yost, the annoying freak on the ferry, shows him the address of where his wife is shacked up with his former best friend Reese and the missing money, he doesn't bother to take notes. He just memorizes the address and does what he has to do.
8. Walker always puts safety first.
When Big John, the cooz hound used car salesman, tells him that he doesn't need to buckle up, Walker reminds him that most accidents happen within three miles from home.
7. Walker doesn't use personal violence needlessly.
When he asks Big John where he can find Reese, and, Big John won't tell him, Walker doesn't throttle the guy despite the fact that desperately deserves it. Instead, he takes him for a ride in one of his used vehicles.
6. Walker is very persuasive.
When he finally determines where Reese is, he persuades a gay couple in Reese's building to create a diversion so he can get past Reese's goons by telling the couple to contact the cops and report that they are being held hostage. The cops show up and the sirens and general bedlam cause the thugs not to notice when Walker effortlessly slips past them.
5. Walker knows that all women secretly want him.
After Walker has already bagged his sister-in-law, Chris, (Angie Dickinson), and, convinces her to distract Reese, he rides up in the elevator to the Penthouse level where Reese is and encounters Reese's secretary. He then casually reaches down between her legs to press the button that opens Reese's electronically fortified front door. The secretary doesn't even flinch.
4. Walker is merciful.
Betrayed by his best friend, Reese, Walker still doesn't exact retribution upon Reese when he finds him naked and sniveling for his life. Instead, Walker gives Reese a choice and the coward hurls himself over his patio from the Penthouse level.
3. Walker doesn't beat on weaklings.
Walker eventually finds the brains of the Organization. When Brewster (Carroll O'Connor) balks after he asks him for his $93k, Walker sits back on the couch and takes a break instead of beating the living shit out of Archie Bunker.
2. Walker doesn't abuse women.
Following some heated discussion, Chris powers on all of the electrical appliances in Brewster's house. When he finds her sipping on some booze next to the pool table, he is about to walk away when she cracks him on the noggin with a pool cue, and, then proceeds to furiously bitch slap him. Instead of fighting back, Walker allows her to carry out her tantrum, and then switches on the television where he nonchalantly retires to the sofa to watch a cold cream commercial.
1. Walker forgives.
While taking mighty footsteps of payback through the hallways at LAX airport, Walker reminisces about his wife, Lynne. He imagines what the bitch has been doing without him since she and Reese fired at him from point blank range, took his money and then left him for dead on Alcatraz.
When he bursts through the front door of their home, he grabs her and puts his hand over her mouth so that she can't scream to warn Reese of his presence. He throws her to the floor and then kicks open the bedroom door, and, instead of finding Reese, empties his .38 into vacant sheets. Walker then hears out Lynne as to why she left him for Reese.
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