24 October 2014

The Deadly Tower (1975)
90 min.
Directed by Jerry Jameson.
With Kurt Russell, Richard Yniguez, John Forsythe, Ned Beatty, Pernell Roberts, Clifton James, Paul Carr, Alan Vint, Maria Elena Cordero.
Gripping dramatization of the horrific 1966 Charles Whitman sniper rampage that killed 14 people and injured dozens more in Austin, TX.

An expert rifleman and USMC private, 25 year old Whitman (Russell) climbed to the top of UT's Texas Tower and opened gunfire on unsuspecting students and faculty below.

As the carnage raged for over 90 minutes, local policeman Ramiro Martinez (Yniguez) made his way to the top of the Tower to confront the killer face to face.

Deadly Tower tends to be apolitical, so second amendment activists - on either side of the issue - will not likely find any firm footing in this straightforward TV recreation of the tragic massacre.

The dual character study of the disturbed Whitman and the valiant cop who would end the reign of terror is nicely executed by Russell and Yniguez.

Likewise, the underappreciated Beatty is delightfully good here as the bookworm-turned-deputy.

Also known as Sniper.

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