From The Grindhouse Cinema Database
Revision as of 13:26, 1 July 2009 by PopeyePete
Also Known As
- Death Cheaters (USA)
- Kuoleman uhmaajat (Finland)
- Released in 1976
- Running time: 93 minutes
- Production co: Brian Trenchard-Smith Productions
Cast and Crew
- Directed by Brian Trenchard-Smith
- Written by Michael Cove, Brian Trenchard-Smith (story)
- Produced by Brian Trenchard-Smith
- Starring John Hargreaves, Grant Page
- Music by Peter Martin
- Cinematography by John Seale
- Film Editing by Ron Williams
The premise of Deathcheaters is actually quite funny. I don't mean the plot, but the idea behind the production of this film. It is complete exploitation. Here you have a film starring one of Australia's top stuntmen at the time, playing a stuntman similar to his real-life persona. In theory, the whole film just sounds like a big set-up for as many stunts as can possibly fit into the running time. Albeit, it isn't quite as exploitative as Brian Trenchard-Smith's other stunt film, Stunt Rock (a decision to simply combine stunts with rock music in an effort to create an enthralling film).
Grant Page plays a stuntman named Rod who spends his days doing stunts with his partner Steve (John Hargreaves, best known for his starring role in Long Weekend) for Television commercials. After spotting a car chase between the police and what appear to be criminals, the two come to the rescue and see them apprehended. Then the policeman asks the pair is they would help out with another problem, providing air to a "bank vault" on a high floor of a high rise, where apparently some men are trapped. The action-hungry stuntmen jump on it. It soon turns out, though, that these were simply tests of ability. And they find themselves being recruited by a secret organisation to infiltrate a dubious factory in the Phillipines and recover some highly valuable documents from the factory's safe.
They take some time to think it over (Steve having a wife to worry about), but their minds are already made up. The men can't resist the excitement. Deathcheaters is not a well-known film. In the already little known Australian exploitation industry, Deathcheaters is even less well-known. But thanks to the work of Australia's most famous exploitation director, it's not at all a bad film. Grant Page is a very charismatic individual despite spending most of the film wearing clothes that make him look like a gay pirate. John Hargreaves is good as usual, sporting an awesome moustache. There are a good amount of explosions and gunfights and car chases, and whilst it slows down for a bit before the explosive finale, it's a thoroughly exciting film.
Reviewed by Angel - 6 April 09.