The Eiger Sanction

Tagline : HIS LIFELINE - held by the assassin he hunted.

Runtime : 129 mins

Genre : Action Adventure Drama

Vote Rating : 6.1/10

Budget : 9 million $ USD

Revenue : 14.2 million $ USD

Plot : A classical art professor and collector, who doubles as a professional assassin, is coerced out of retirement to avenge the murder of an old friend.

Cast Members


_**Dirty Harry climbs a mountain**_ An American art professor (Clint Eastwood) is coerced back into his former occupation as a government assassin for a couple final hits before retirement. One of the gigs involves an international climb of The Eiger, a mountain in Switzerland, so he has to prepare at a resort in Arizona ran by his buddy (George Kennedy). Thayer David plays the head of the secretive organization while Jack Cassidy is on hand as a foppish nemesis in the desert. "The Eiger Sanction” (1975) is a secret agent adventure/thriller that’s not as over-the-top as James Bond. Handheld cameras and special equipment were utilized for the climbing sequences wherein Eastwood did his own stuntwork under risky conditions. A British climber, 26 year-old David Knowles, died on The Eiger while making the film. Climber Chic (Charles) Scott was embittered about nearly everything concerning the shooting of the hazardous climbing scenes and you can read his diatribes online. (The proverbial “If you can’t stand the heat, get out of the kitchen” applies). The film scores pretty well in the feminine department with Candice Rialson as an art student, Brenda Venus a fitness trainer, Heidi Brühl a dubious wife of one of the climbers and Vonetta McGee a fellow agent. Eastwood was in his prime at the time, the king of cool who effortlessly attracts these ladies. The scenic shots in Monument Valley, Utah and Switzerland are alone worth the price of admission, plus there are several quirkily amusing or engaging bits. Meanwhile the score by John Williams is mostly good, but some of it is incongruous for a secret agent thriller (e.g. the curious mellow piece during the climax & end credits). There’s something odd about the production in general that makes it unique in the Eastwood canon and explains why it’s relatively obscure. The movie runs 2 hours, 8 minutes, and was shot in California (Los Angeles, Universal City and Carmel-by-the-Sea), Arizona (Monument Valley), Utah (Zion National Park) and Switzerland (Zurich, Kleine Scheidegg and Eiger/Bernese Alps). GRADE: B

Strong start, limp finish. I enjoyed the spy elements to 'The Eiger Sanction', sure it's a bit cheesy and could feel like a Bond knock-off in parts, but all in all it was cool to see Clint Eastwood in that role. Unfortunately, while I wouldn't say it's bad, the rest of the film focuses on uninteresting - due to how dragged out it is - mountain climbing. It concludes with strong vibes of 1959's 'Third Man on the Mountain', a Disney film that is filled with mountain climbing. Like that aforementioned production, I didn't dislike what I was seeing but it's just not that intriguing to watch for an extended time. I'm rating this 3* as it's still a solid film, with neat cinematography, but it could've been so much more due to what it sets up initially.

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