99 and 44/100% Dead (1974)

PG | 97-98 or 101 mins | Comedy-drama | 1974

Director:

John Frankenheimer

Writer:

Robert Dillon

Producer:

Joe Wizan

Cinematographer:

Ralph Woolsey

Editor:

Harold F. Kress

Production Designer:

Herman Blumenthal

Production Company:

Joe Wizan-Vashon Productions
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HISTORY

Stillman Orlando Suero is credited onscreen as "Orlando.” Title cards in the end credits state that an underwater sequence was filmed in Silver Springs, FL, and a bridge sequence was filmed at the Port of Los Angeles, CA.
       A 25 Apr 1969 HR “Rambling Reporter” column announced that actor Marcello Mastroianni signed on to star in 99 and 44/100% Dead, to be filmed in New York the following fall. Another HR column on 5 May 1969 stated that Sergio Leone would assist writer Robert Dillon on the screenplay, and actors Charles Bronson and Bill Jordan were being considered to co-star alongside Mastroianni. Leone received no credit in the final version.
       On 7 Aug 1973, HR reported that Richard Harris had been slated to star in the film, and the start date was set for 10 Aug 1973. After three weeks of filming in Seattle, WA, production would continue at Twentieth Century-Fox Film Corporation’s studio in Los Angeles. According to a 29 Aug 1973 HR brief, stuntmen Max Kleven, Anthony Brubaker, Jerry Summers, Roy Jenson, Bernie Dobbins, and Chuck Roberson would “do double duty as stuntmen and actors.”
       The film opened to largely negative reviews. In the 3 Jul 1974 LAT, Charles Champlin wrote that it was “within 56/100% of being totally humorless,” and a 30 Sep 1974 Time review stated, “Call it 100% Dead and be done with it.” John Frankenheimer’s direction was uniformly criticized, and the 19 Jun 1974 Var pointed to “Dillon’s sophomoric, repulsive screenplay” as Frankenheimer’s primary obstacle.
       99 and 44/100% Dead ... More Less

Stillman Orlando Suero is credited onscreen as "Orlando.” Title cards in the end credits state that an underwater sequence was filmed in Silver Springs, FL, and a bridge sequence was filmed at the Port of Los Angeles, CA.
       A 25 Apr 1969 HR “Rambling Reporter” column announced that actor Marcello Mastroianni signed on to star in 99 and 44/100% Dead, to be filmed in New York the following fall. Another HR column on 5 May 1969 stated that Sergio Leone would assist writer Robert Dillon on the screenplay, and actors Charles Bronson and Bill Jordan were being considered to co-star alongside Mastroianni. Leone received no credit in the final version.
       On 7 Aug 1973, HR reported that Richard Harris had been slated to star in the film, and the start date was set for 10 Aug 1973. After three weeks of filming in Seattle, WA, production would continue at Twentieth Century-Fox Film Corporation’s studio in Los Angeles. According to a 29 Aug 1973 HR brief, stuntmen Max Kleven, Anthony Brubaker, Jerry Summers, Roy Jenson, Bernie Dobbins, and Chuck Roberson would “do double duty as stuntmen and actors.”
       The film opened to largely negative reviews. In the 3 Jul 1974 LAT, Charles Champlin wrote that it was “within 56/100% of being totally humorless,” and a 30 Sep 1974 Time review stated, “Call it 100% Dead and be done with it.” John Frankenheimer’s direction was uniformly criticized, and the 19 Jun 1974 Var pointed to “Dillon’s sophomoric, repulsive screenplay” as Frankenheimer’s primary obstacle.
       99 and 44/100% Dead marked model-actress Ann Turkel’s feature film debut.
More Less

BIBLIOGRAPHIC SOURCES
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
Box Office
24 Jun 1974
p. 4700.
Hollywood Reporter
25 Apr 1969.
---
Hollywood Reporter
5 May 1969.
---
Hollywood Reporter
7 Aug 1973.
---
Hollywood Reporter
10 Aug 1973
p. 10.
Hollywood Reporter
29 Aug 1973.
---
Hollywood Reporter
31 Aug 1973.
---
Hollywood Reporter
26 Oct 1973
p. 14.
Hollywood Reporter
12 Jun 1974
p. 5, 7.
Los Angeles Times
3 Jul 1974.
---
New York Times
30 Aug 1974
p. 22.
Time
30 Sep 1974.
---
Variety
19 Jun 1974
p. 18.
CAST
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT

PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
PRODUCTION COMPANY
PRODUCTION TEXT
A Film by John Frankenheimer
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
DIRECTORS
Underwater dir
Asst dir
2d asst dir
Asst dir trainee
PRODUCERS
Prod
Assoc prod
WRITER
PHOTOGRAPHY
Dir of photog
Underwater photog
Still man
2d cam op
1st cam tech
2d cam tech
3d cam tech
Gaffer
Best boy
Head grip
Dolly/2d grip
Dolly grip
ART DIRECTOR
FILM EDITORS
Film ed
Asst film ed
SET DECORATORS
Prop master
Const coord
2d prop man
Propmaker foreman
COSTUMES
Cost des
Women's cost
Men's ward
MUSIC
SOUND
Boom man
Rerec mixer
Sd ed
Sd ed
Dial ed
VISUAL EFFECTS
MAKEUP
Makeup
Hairdresser
PRODUCTION MISC
Casting
Casting secy
Loc casting
Studio S. E. G. casting
Prod mgr
Studio prod mgr
Asst to the prod
Prod secy
Secy to dir
Auditor
Unit pub
STAND INS
Stunt coord
SOURCES
SONGS
"Easy, Baby," lyrics by Alan & Marilyn Bergman, music by Henry Mancini, sung by Jim Gilstrap.
DETAILS
Release Date:
1974
Premiere Information:
Los Angeles opening: 3 July 1974
Production Date:
10 August--late October 1973 in Seattle, WA and Los Angeles, CA
Copyright Claimant:
Twentieth Century-Fox Film Corporation
Copyright Date:
26 June 1974
Copyright Number:
LP43763
Physical Properties:
Sound
Westrex Recording System
Color
Color by Deluxe
Widescreen/ratio
Filmed in Panavision
Duration(in mins):
97-98 or 101
MPAA Rating:
PG
Country:
United States
Language:
English
SYNOPSIS

Two thugs throw a dead body attached to a cement block into the sea, where several other corpses have been deposited. As the thugs drive away, they are pursued by armed gunmen, and after being shot at several times, they drive off a pier. While gambling, Harry Crown, an assassin, receives a call from a gangster named Uncle Frank who needs his help. When Harry asks about other henchmen who may be able to do the job, Frank says they are all dead, explaining that a war has broken out between himself and another mob boss, Big Eddie. Frank offers Harry $80,000, and after hearing the offer, Harry raises his bet at the poker table. Taking a train to Uncle Frank’s town, Harry goes to a nightclub and finds Buffy, an old girlfriend who teaches elementary school. After relaying the rumor that Big Eddie is expected to win the gang war, Buffy invites him to stay at her house and they spend the night together. The next morning, Buffy gives Harry the ominous news that Marvin “The Claw” Zuckerman is working for Big Eddie. Later that day, a sniper shoots at Harry as he walks down the street, but Frank rescues him just in time, ushering him into a limousine. Inside the car, Frank tells Harry that Claw has been spending time at Dolly’s and orders his driver, Tony, to accompany Harry in search of Claw. At a penthouse office, Dolly sends Baby, a female escort, into a room where Claw shows her how he can attach a knife to the hook prosthesis on his left arm. Harry arrives with Tony and two of Claw’s henchmen stand to block ... +


Two thugs throw a dead body attached to a cement block into the sea, where several other corpses have been deposited. As the thugs drive away, they are pursued by armed gunmen, and after being shot at several times, they drive off a pier. While gambling, Harry Crown, an assassin, receives a call from a gangster named Uncle Frank who needs his help. When Harry asks about other henchmen who may be able to do the job, Frank says they are all dead, explaining that a war has broken out between himself and another mob boss, Big Eddie. Frank offers Harry $80,000, and after hearing the offer, Harry raises his bet at the poker table. Taking a train to Uncle Frank’s town, Harry goes to a nightclub and finds Buffy, an old girlfriend who teaches elementary school. After relaying the rumor that Big Eddie is expected to win the gang war, Buffy invites him to stay at her house and they spend the night together. The next morning, Buffy gives Harry the ominous news that Marvin “The Claw” Zuckerman is working for Big Eddie. Later that day, a sniper shoots at Harry as he walks down the street, but Frank rescues him just in time, ushering him into a limousine. Inside the car, Frank tells Harry that Claw has been spending time at Dolly’s and orders his driver, Tony, to accompany Harry in search of Claw. At a penthouse office, Dolly sends Baby, a female escort, into a room where Claw shows her how he can attach a knife to the hook prosthesis on his left arm. Harry arrives with Tony and two of Claw’s henchmen stand to block them from Claw’s office. Harry beats one of the men and barges in on Claw as he strangles Baby with a whip. Harry taunts Claw, asking if he is still angry that Harry chopped off his hand years ago. Using Baby as a hostage, Claw escapes, pushing her out of the elevator just before the doors close. Tony helps Baby up from the floor, and later meets her for a date. Meahwhile, Harry visits Buffy on a field trip where she has taken her third grade class. Buffy asks Harry what he plans to do after the gang war ends, and when he says he might take a European cruise, Buffy expresses interest in going with him. That evening, Harry gets orders to stop one of Big Eddie’s trucks and destroy the cargo of stolen alcohol within. After stopping the truck on the street, Harry and Tony discover Claw and several henchmen wielding automatic weapons. A gunfight ensues, but Harry manages to run the truck off a bridge after Claw and his men disperse. Harry then pushes Tony into the sea before diving in himself. Harry goes to Frank’s house but finds only his young mistress, Clara. Frank asks Harry to come get him, but Harry stays to hide out at Frank’s and fends off Clara’s advances. The next day, Buffy commandeers a school bus to rescue Harry from Frank’s and finds him there with Clara, assuming they slept together. The threesome sneaks back into the school bus as gunmen shoot at them, and Buffy drives recklessly to escape. Harry allows Buffy to stay angry, failing to reveal that he did not cheat. Later, Tony asks Harry to help him find Baby, who has gone missing. To evade Big Eddie’s men, Harry leads Tony through the sewer; however, the thugs catch up with them underground, taking them hostage and delivering them to a park. There, Big Eddie offers Harry a chance to work for him instead of Frank. Meanwhile, Tony sees Baby being driven away by Eddie’s men and calls out to her. Harry refuses Eddie’s offer and his gang leaves the park. The next day, Harry learns that Big Eddie’s men are after Buffy, and he and Tony rush to save her at school, though they arrive too late, only finding Baby inside Buffy’s classroom, tied to a chair. Harry removes his shoes and gingerly approaches Baby, assuming she is wired to an explosive device. Harry finds the device underneath her chair and removes several triggers from Baby’s body as she calls to Tony across the room. Baby tells Harry that Eddie’s men drugged Buffy and took her away. Harry finally extricates Baby from the trap, hands her over to Tony, and urges them to leave. Moments later, as Harry walks away from the school, a fly triggers the bomb and it explodes, destroying the second floor of the schoolhouse. Soon after, Harry, Tony, and three other men seek out Eddie’s gang at an industrial laundry facility. Tony approaches the upstairs office but is shot down, and Harry follows closely behind. Upstairs, Harry finds Eddie using Buffy as a hostage. Eddie forces Harry to toss his guns and sends Claw after him. However, when Claw fires his automatic weapon, Harry grabs another of Eddie’s men to use as a shield. Harry and Claw fight, and Harry overpowers him, sending Claw into a vat of hot, reddish liquid. Turning a corner in the laundry, Harry watches as Frank shoots Big Eddie in order to save Buffy. Just before Eddie dies, he tells Frank that his girlfriend, Clara, accepted Eddie’s money and agreed to turn on him. Clara approaches Frank from behind and swears the claim was false, but Frank refuses to believe her. At the dock, Harry and Buffy bid goodbye to Tony and Baby before they board a cruise ship. At sea, Harry watches as an assassin boards the ship from a smaller boat, presumably there to kill Harry and Buffy, but Harry eyes the assassin until he retreats back to the boat. Later, the same assassin and Clara both float to the bottom of the sea, tied to cement blocks. +

Legend
Viewed by AFI
Partially Viewed
Offscreen Credit
Name Occurs Before Title
AFI Life Achievement Award

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