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8 Million Ways to Die (1986)

Scudder is a detective with the Sheriff's Department who is forced to shoot a violent suspect during a narcotics raid. The ensuing psychological aftermath of this shooting worsens his ... See full summary »

Director:

Hal Ashby

Writers:

Lawrence Block (book), Oliver Stone (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
1 nomination. See more awards »

Photos

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Jeff Bridges ... Scudder
Rosanna Arquette ... Sarah
Alexandra Paul ... Sunny
Randy Brooks ... Chance
Andy Garcia ... Angel Maldonado
Lisa Sloan Lisa Sloan ... Linda Scudder
Christa Denton ... Laurie Scudder
Vance Valencia ... Quintero
Wilfredo Hernández Wilfredo Hernández ... Hector Lopez (as Wilfredo Hernandez)
Luisa Leschin Luisa Leschin ... Hector's Wife
Vyto Ruginis ... Durkin
Henry O. Arnold Henry O. Arnold ... Homicide Detective (as Chip Arnold)
James Avery ... Deputy D.A.
Jack Younger Jack Younger ... Drunk
Zoaunne LeRoy Zoaunne LeRoy ... Nurse
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Storyline

Scudder is a detective with the Sheriff's Department who is forced to shoot a violent suspect during a narcotics raid. The ensuing psychological aftermath of this shooting worsens his drinking problem and this alcoholism causes him to lose his job, as well as his marriage. During his recovery through Alcoholics Anonymous, he meets a mysterious stranger who draws him back into a world of vice. In trying to help this beautiful woman, he must enter a crime-world of prostitution and drugs to solve a murder, while resisting the temptation to return to his alcohol abuse. Written by Tad Dibbern <DIBBERN_D@a1.mscf.upenn.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Death comes to all except those who deserve it most See more »


Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English | Spanish

Release Date:

25 April 1986 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

8 Millionen Wege zu sterben See more »

Filming Locations:

Los Angeles, California, USA

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Box Office

Budget:

$18,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$609,955, 27 April 1986

Gross USA:

$1,305,114

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$1,305,114
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Stereo | Dolby Digital (uncredited)

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Producer John W. Hyde is now also producing another book-to-film version of a Matt Scudder thriller. This time he is involved in bringing author Lawrence Block's "A Walk Among the Tombstones" to the big screen. Liam Neeson will be starring as Scudder. See more »

Goofs

(at 33:00m) When Sunny, the hooker, is thrown from bridge into the river, she is initially shown lying dead in one position along the water's edge, face-down on riverbank. In the subsequent shot, she's in an alternate position and location, more blood-soaked, and face now submerged. See more »

Quotes

Angel Moldonado: You think I'm a fool? That's rude, man. You're being disrespectful and rude.
Matthew 'Matt' Scudder: Rude? Come on, you were rude all over the fucking street with Sunny, weren't you? Rude?
Angel Moldonado: Let me explain something to you, what happend to Sunny, man. What happened to her, is people think that if you have to kill somebody in the course of... doing business, sometimes it pays to advertise. You know, make it messy. Remind people they bleed when they die. It might even prevent more killings.
Matthew 'Matt' Scudder: You're a real humanitarian.
Angel Moldonado: I ...
See more »


Soundtracks

If You Have To Know
Performed by Lonnie Mack
Words and Music by Will Jennings, Lonnie Mack and Tim Drummond
From the album, "Strike Like Lightning" - 1985
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Ineffective crime drama.
13 August 2017 | by Hey_SwedenSee all my reviews

Jeff Bridges portrays author Lawrence Blocks' character Matt Scudder in this picture, and his able performance is one of its few virtues. Matt is a detective for the L.A. Sheriffs' Department who is also an alcoholic. Ultimately, his drinking costs him his marriage and his job. However, he is soon approached by a hooker named Sunny (Alexandra Paul) to remove her from her unhappy life, and when he gets involved, he incurs the wrath of a smug drug kingpin (Andy Garcia) and a powerful pimp (Randy Brooks).

Sadly, this was the final theatrical credit for editor turned director Hal Ashby. A recovering substance abuser himself, he had little to no creative control over the final product. He wanted something grittier and closer to the novel (which this movie barely resembles), the producers wanted a feature film version of 'Miami Vice'. But what really hurts it is the poor script (credited to Oliver Stone and R. Lance Hill (a.k.a. "David Lee Henry"), which moves at a snails' pace and doesn't encourage us to really care about the characters.

The lack of success is not for lack of effort on Bridges' part. He, the intense Brooks, and the amusingly slimy Garcia entertain the viewer sufficiently. But Paul is miscast, and Rosanna Arquette, as one of Sunny's co-workers, looks like she couldn't care less. Familiar faces in supporting roles and bits include Vyto Ruginis, James Avery, Tommy 'Tiny' Lister, Rosalind Allen, and Loyd Catlett.

Absolutely gorgeous photography, good use of locations, an atmospheric score by James Newton Howard (one of his earliest), stunning helicopter shots, and some jarring violence work in the films' favor. But it goes on too long (especially that climactic confrontation in the warehouse, which becomes unbearable rather than tense), and has too much inane dialogue.

The man who made "Harold and Maude", "Coming Home", and "Being There" deserved a better theatrical swan song than this.

Five out of 10.


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