Hooper (1978) – 5/10 action comedy movie review

Cast / crew
Actor and Producer Sonny Hooper: Burt Reynolds
Executive Producer: Lawrence Gordon
Jan-Michael Vincent: Ski
Sally Field: Gwen
Brian Keith: Jocko
John Marley: Max Berns
Robert Klein: Roger Deal
Writer (Screenplay): Thomas Rickman
Writer (Screenplay): Bill Kerby
Writer (Story): Walt Green
Writer (Story): Walter S. Herndon
Producer: Hank Moonjean
Director: Hal Needham

Hooper (1978)

Ageing stuntman Hooper is enticed to end his career with one last huge stunt, a 328 foot jump over an exploded bridge in a rocket car. Not only will this stunt end his career but he is very real danger of it ending his life.

5/10

Hooper is a bizarrely unconvincing tale of a stuntman realising retirement is looming and wanting to go out on one last big stunt. It’s reasonable enough fun and was popular at the time but the stuntwork is poorly filmed with some atrocious stunt double work, no consideration given to the suspenseful and interesting preparation and no indication that stunts are filmed a tiny piece at a time and their production is no less dramatic for it. Instead, we get a final stunt sequence where a million stunts are all strung together impactlessly and the finalĂ© rocket car stunt looks like a model. This flat incompetence is a trademark of stunt coordinator turned director Hal Needham. There is but a single stunt that is impressively filmed – our hero car driving under a collapsing chimney stack – the danger and skill is captured perfectly but it’s the only time it happens.

This movie contains bad language, strong adult dialogue and violence.

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