Point blank, USA, 1967, John Boorman: www.warnervideo.com.

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Rating: ***

Point Blank is a gutsy, earthy film noir starring Lee Marvin, Angie Dickenson, Keenan Wynn and Carroll O'Connor. Marvin is a revenge-seeking crook looking for his take of a heist taken from him by his partner, who shoots him "point blank" twice with a 2" and leaves him to die. The real co-star with Marvin, though, is a 4" S&W Model 27.357 Magnum in a rare screen appearance. Marvin is no small man, standing 6'3", and the massive 42-ounce Model 27 S&W looks huge in his hand. The gun is featured prominently, usually in Marvin's hand and the former Marine's gun handling is realistic.

The movie is somewhat surreal and it is unclear if it is the dying dream of the wounded Marvin or if he has recovered and is seeking revenge in reality. Flashbacks and flash forwards add to the surrealism, as do the few touches of '60s pychedelia dating the movie even more than the cars. Nonetheless, the visceral fist-fight in a nightclub is one of the better screen fights.

The other gun featured prominently appears to be an 8X or 10X Unertl- or perhaps Lyman-scoped FN Supreme small-bore used by James Sikking, playing a hired assassin. Sikking uses his shooting hand to place the rifle's butt in his shoulder pocket (Marvin's influence?) to make his shot. We know it's a small bore, maybe a .222 Remington or .222 Remington Mag, because Marvin hands Wynn one of the cases and Wynn...

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