Flashpoint (1984)

R | 95 mins | Mystery, Drama | 31 August 1984

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HISTORY

       A 13 Aug 1975 Var news item announced that First Artists purchased screen rights to George La Fountaine’s novel, Flashpoint. According to a 1 Sep 1984 Screen International article, La Fountaine was a television cinematographer, who wrote novels as a hobby. Another of La Fountaine’s novels, Two-Minute Warning (1976, see entry), was also made into a movie.
       Screen International also reported that screenwriters Michael Butler and Dennis Shyrack originally wrote the script for star Paul Newman and Warren Oates, and Martin Ritt was initially hired to direct. First Artists liquidated the property with other assets, and a Canadian producer bought it before producer Skip Short and director William Tannen acquired the rights.
       HR production charts on 14 Feb 1984 HR announced that principal photography began 16 Jan 1984 in Tucson, AZ.
       A 16 Jan 1984 LAHExam news item stated that Flashpoint was the first production of Silver Screen Partners, a joint venture between cable television station Home Box Office (HBO) and Columbia Pictures.
       The 5 Sep 1985 Var review called Flashpoint “a four flusher that almost bluffs its way past disbelief, but audiences are likely to tire of its game very quickly.”
      Actor Miguel Ferrer’s first name is misspelled “Miguell” in onscreen credits. End credits include the following statement: “With special thanks to the Tucson Film ... More Less

       A 13 Aug 1975 Var news item announced that First Artists purchased screen rights to George La Fountaine’s novel, Flashpoint. According to a 1 Sep 1984 Screen International article, La Fountaine was a television cinematographer, who wrote novels as a hobby. Another of La Fountaine’s novels, Two-Minute Warning (1976, see entry), was also made into a movie.
       Screen International also reported that screenwriters Michael Butler and Dennis Shyrack originally wrote the script for star Paul Newman and Warren Oates, and Martin Ritt was initially hired to direct. First Artists liquidated the property with other assets, and a Canadian producer bought it before producer Skip Short and director William Tannen acquired the rights.
       HR production charts on 14 Feb 1984 HR announced that principal photography began 16 Jan 1984 in Tucson, AZ.
       A 16 Jan 1984 LAHExam news item stated that Flashpoint was the first production of Silver Screen Partners, a joint venture between cable television station Home Box Office (HBO) and Columbia Pictures.
       The 5 Sep 1985 Var review called Flashpoint “a four flusher that almost bluffs its way past disbelief, but audiences are likely to tire of its game very quickly.”
      Actor Miguel Ferrer’s first name is misspelled “Miguell” in onscreen credits. End credits include the following statement: “With special thanks to the Tucson Film Commission.”
More Less

GEOGRAPHIC LOCATIONS
SOURCE CITATIONS
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
Box Office
Nov 1984.
---
Hollywood Reporter
14 Feb 1984.
---
Hollywood Reporter
4 Sep 1984
p. 3, 54.
LAHExam
16 Jan 1984.
---
LAHExam
31 Aug 1984
p. 6.
Los Angeles Times
31 Aug 1984
p. 4.
Motion Picture Production Digest
3 Oct 1984.
---
New York Times
31 Aug 1984
p. 6.
Screen International
1 Sep 1984.
---
Variety
13 Aug 1975.
---
Variety
5 Sep 1984
p. 20.
CAST
PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
PRODUCTION TEXTS
HBO in association with Silver Screen Partners presents
A William Tannen – Skip Short production
A Tri-Star release
DISTRIBUTION COMPANY
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
DIRECTORS
Prod mgr
1st asst dir
1st asst dir
2d asst dir
PRODUCERS
Prod
Assoc prod
Assoc prod
WRITERS
PHOTOGRAPHY
Dir of photog
1st asst cam
2d asst cam
Gaffer
Dolly grip
Key grip
ART DIRECTOR
Prod des
FILM EDITORS
Film ed
Asst film ed
Asst film ed
Apprentice film ed
SET DECORATORS
Set dec
Prop master
2d prop master
COSTUMES
Cost
Ward asst
MUSIC
Mus comp and performed by
SOUND
Sd mixer
Boom op
Utility sd tech
Supv sd ed
Supv sd ed
Sd ed
Asst sd ed
Re-rec mixer
Re-rec mixer
Re-rec mixer
Post production facility
VISUAL EFFECTS
Spec eff supv
Titles and opticals
MAKEUP
Makeup artist
Hairstylist
PRODUCTION MISC
Casting
Casting
Loc mgr
Scr supv
Unit pub
Craft service
Transportation coord
Paramedic
Prod coord
Prod auditor
Asst auditor
Prod secy
Prod asst
Prod asst
STAND INS
Stunt
Stunt/Pilot
COLOR PERSONNEL
In
Col
Col timer
SOURCES
LITERARY
Based on the novel Flashpoint by George La Fountaine (New York, 1976).
MUSIC
"Flashpoint," written by Scott Richardson, performed by Scott Richardson & the Gems
"Who's That Memory In Your Eyes," written by Scott Richardson, performed by Scott Richardson & the Gems.
COMPOSER
DETAILS
Release Date:
31 August 1984
Premiere Information:
Los Angeles and New York openings: 31 August 1984
Production Date:
16 January––late-February 1984 in Tuscon, AZ
Copyright Claimant:
Silver Screen Partners, L. P.
Copyright Date:
14 September 1984
Copyright Number:
PA229988
Physical Properties:
Sound
Color
Lenses
Lenses and Panaflex® camera by Panavision®
Duration(in mins):
95
MPAA Rating:
R
Country:
United States
Language:
English
PCA No:
27459
Passed by NBR:
No
SYNOPSIS

In the Texas desert, during a heavy rainstorm, a Jeep plunges over a cliff. Twenty years later, at the U.S. Border Patrol’s Del Amo Station, agents Robert E. “Bobby” Logan and Ernest “Ernie” Wyatt learn the agency is adopting a new electronic system for monitoring illegal immigrant activity, and the men are assigned to bury geo-sensors throughout their sector. The devices will require two-thirds fewer agents, with the remaining staff soon manning desks. After the meeting, Ernie and Logan confront colleagues Bobby Joe Lambasino and his partner Roget about a knife Lambosino allegedly stole from Logan. On patrol in the desert, Ernie and Logan discover a disabled car with two telephone company employees, Doris and Ellen, asleep inside. They drop the ladies off at a motel and Logan slips a local mechanic $5 to delay repairing the car one day. Later, Logan discovers the wreckage of an old Jeep, containing a skeleton, buried in a dry riverbed. Meanwhile, Ernie responds to an traffic accident in nearby Dos Gatos, involving a water tanker and a van containing twenty-one illegal immigrants. The driver of the van was killed, but the owner, a rancher named Pedroza, claims the vehicle was stolen. Afterward, Logan shows his partner the Jeep, and a case containing $800,000. They learn the driver was Michael J. Curtis of San Antonio. They also find a fishing pole case containing a rifle. Logan wants to split the money, but Ernie is apprehensive. The men hide the Jeep and stash the money in the ruins of a nearby house. Later, Logan and Ernie go to a roadhouse with Ellen and Doris and spend the night with them. The next day, the ... +


In the Texas desert, during a heavy rainstorm, a Jeep plunges over a cliff. Twenty years later, at the U.S. Border Patrol’s Del Amo Station, agents Robert E. “Bobby” Logan and Ernest “Ernie” Wyatt learn the agency is adopting a new electronic system for monitoring illegal immigrant activity, and the men are assigned to bury geo-sensors throughout their sector. The devices will require two-thirds fewer agents, with the remaining staff soon manning desks. After the meeting, Ernie and Logan confront colleagues Bobby Joe Lambasino and his partner Roget about a knife Lambosino allegedly stole from Logan. On patrol in the desert, Ernie and Logan discover a disabled car with two telephone company employees, Doris and Ellen, asleep inside. They drop the ladies off at a motel and Logan slips a local mechanic $5 to delay repairing the car one day. Later, Logan discovers the wreckage of an old Jeep, containing a skeleton, buried in a dry riverbed. Meanwhile, Ernie responds to an traffic accident in nearby Dos Gatos, involving a water tanker and a van containing twenty-one illegal immigrants. The driver of the van was killed, but the owner, a rancher named Pedroza, claims the vehicle was stolen. Afterward, Logan shows his partner the Jeep, and a case containing $800,000. They learn the driver was Michael J. Curtis of San Antonio. They also find a fishing pole case containing a rifle. Logan wants to split the money, but Ernie is apprehensive. The men hide the Jeep and stash the money in the ruins of a nearby house. Later, Logan and Ernie go to a roadhouse with Ellen and Doris and spend the night with them. The next day, the men take two of the old bills they found to a coin shop for authentication. Ernie is still reluctant to keep the money, and he suggests they research any large heists in the area in 1963, the date of the newest bill. He also asks Ellen and Doris to run two telephone numbers they found in the buried Jeep. Logan checks microfilm at the library, but cannot locate any crimes netting more than $75,000, while Ernie discovers Mr. Curtis’ home was torn down years earlier. Later, while investigating reports of a suspicious airplane landing at Alianza Mesa, thirty miles outside Dos Gatos, the agents speak to Sheriff Wells, a former Texas Ranger with Logan’s father. Ernie and Logan later question a man named Amarillo, who informs them that a Cessna airplane lands on the mesa every Tuesday and Friday. Capt. Brook orders Logan and Ernie to stake out the mesa for a potential drug transaction. Logan grows suspicious about the found $800,000 because their research has turned up no leads. He suggests that once they make arrests at the mesa, they can retire to Mexico with the money. When the agents report to the station on Friday, Brook introduces them to Federal Inspector Carson and his two men, who are taking over the investigation of the airplane. During a briefing, Carson unveils his strategy and announces that he does not care about the airplane, he wants to focus on the pick-up vehicle. Logan points out that if they concentrate on the plane, they are that much closer to the supplier, and Carson agrees. On the stakeout, Logan suspects Carson has ulterior motives, and the inspector responds that he is a “fixer.” Later, a van arrives on the mesa, followed by the plane. The pilot and the driver transfer two duffel bags to the van. As Logan and Ernie move in, Carson fires a shot, tipping off the criminals. Ernie holds on to the plane as it takes it off, but jumps into a pond before the aircraft crashes, killing the pilot. Carson’s men capture the driver of the van. Logan accuses Carson of intentionally alerting the smugglers, but he claims he was shooting at the plane. Later, at their shared house, Logan tells Ernie about his conversation with Carson and insists they leave as soon as possible for Mexico. Doris and Ellen show up unexpectedly after stopping by the station, and Logan claims that he and Ernie are going on vacation. The women announce their discovery that the one traced phone number identified a man named Beck in Washington D.C., while the other one belonged to the Dallas Police Department. They report that they gave the information to Lambasino at the station, and saw the Federal agents bring in a skeleton. Logan explains that something suspicious is going on, but he cannot reveal details. Ellen asks to go to Mexico with Logan, but he declines the request. Meanwhile, Carson’s men kill Amarillo. The next day, Logan learns that Brook is being transferred to Washington, D.C., and Carson is the new interim commanding officer; no one has seen Lambasino or Roget. A colleague alerts Logan and Ernie of a military operation in the location where they found the Jeep. There, Carson’s men are leading an Army platoon excavating the Jeep. Ernie and Logan notice the tracks of a man leading a mule, which sends them to Amarillo’s trailer; the structure has been burned out. They discover footprints implicating Carson’s men, and tire tracks that indicate Lambasino and Roget were also recently at the scene. Logan and Ernie later discover Lambasino and Roget’s bodies in an abandoned barn. Carson assigns Logan and Ernie to investigate a transaction involving the rancher, Pedroza. Logan wants to take the money and escape, but Ernie insists on going after Pedroza. When Ernie fails to show up at a rendezvous point, Logan radios Carson, and learns that Ernie caught Pedroza and returned to the station. However, Logan does not believe Carson and discovers his partner dead; Logan’s knife is stuck in Ernie’s chest. Logan goes to collect the hidden money, but is pursued by Carson and his men. Hiding in the brush, Logan kills the two agents and wounds Carson. When Carson refuses to reveal what is going on, Logan kills him. Logan picks up the rifle found in the wreckage and realizes it was used in the assassination of John F. Kennedy. Sheriff Wells explains that twenty years earlier, he was asked to meet Curtis and give him the money, as well as directions to Mexico. Out of loyalty to Logan’s father, Wells urges Logan to take the money and go south. Logan wants to stay and reveal the conspiracy, but Wells informs him that he is wanted for Ernie’s murder. Logan reluctantly leaves, and asks Wells to tell the authorities he will return one day. +

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

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