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Non-Review Review: Thunderbolt & Lightfoot

I think that Thunderbolt & Lightfoot might be my favourite Michael Cimino film. Don’t get me wrong, of course. I acknowledge and appreciate the director’s work on The Deer Hunter, but it’s not a film I return to on a regular basis. It’s a thoughtful and powerful commentary on the Vietnam War, but it isn’t among my favourite explorations of that particular conflict. On the other hand, while it still has its own serious flaws, Thunderbolt & Lightfoot has a much lighter touch. It’s a film that offers a great deal of depth beneath a relatively accessible surface layer, serving as an exploration of seventies America, but one with significant hidden depths. However, despite his sophisticated work here, Cimino’s directorial début is not inaccessible and works quite well as a hybrid of the “road” and the “heist”movie genres, albeit with a great deal happening beneath the surface.

The road to nowhere?

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