Stone Cold Dead

1979

Crime / Thriller

9
Rotten Tomatoes Audience - Spilled 60%
IMDb Rating 5.2 10 250

Synopsis


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December 02, 2017 at 08:15 PM

Cast

Michael Ironside as Murdered Police Detective
Richard Crenna as Sgt. Boyd
Paul Williams as Julius Kurtz
Alberta Watson as Olivia Page
720p.BLU 1080p.BLU
781 MB
1280*694
English
NR
23.976 fps
1hr 40 min
P/S 1 / 20
1.63 GB
1920*1040
English
NR
23.976 fps
1hr 40 min
P/S 4 / 19

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by Woodyanders 8 / 10

Solid little crime drama

Hard-nosed detective Boyd (Richard Crenna in fine rugged form) and street smart undercover vice cop Sandy MacAuley (well played with sassy aplomb by Belinda J. Montgomery) work together to catch a sniper who's picking off prostitutes. Boyd's investigation puts him in the path of smooth pimp Julius Kurtz (a surprisingly credible and effective portrayal by Paul Williams) and high class call girl Monica Potter (a sharp performance by Linda Sorensen).

Writer/director George Mendeluk relates the compellingly sordid story at a steady pace, offers a vivid evocation of Toronto's lurid urban underbelly, maintains a grim'n'gritty tone throughout, and delivers a satisfying smattering of tasty gratuitous female nudity. Moreover, there are sturdy supporting contributions from Alberta Watson as the forlorn Olivia Page, Chuck Shumata as Boyd's fed-up partner Sgt. Tony Colabre, Andre Cousineau as pathetic junkie Bernice Carnival, and Monique Mercure as helpful shrink Dr. Bouvier. Dennis Miller's slick cinematography gives this picture a glittery neon look. Paul Zaza's pulsating score hits the funky spot. Worth a watch.

Reviewed by shoobe01-1 6 / 10

Tantalizingly Close, Yet So Far

Richard Crenna and Paul Williams are excellent, a few supporting actors are also outstanding. The photography is occasionally too gimmicky, but is mostly good to exceptional. The music is great, even when it's not music I love it fits. It establishes a mood, time and place (It's Very, Very Toronto, not NYC or LA...) nicely. There's some lovely editing, lighting and the sound design and recording is vastly above par for the era, and pretty good for today's technology and sensibility.

A lot of it is filmed in real locations, and it's a lovely slice of 70's TO. Sets stick out like a sore thumb, and the occasional covering of a brand with gaffer tape is too obvious also. The snowstorm seems like a mistake as well they had to go with for budget/schedule, and there are a few radio VOs to explain things that are just very oddly/badly done. Some key supporting actors are just awful and similarly stick out, which is all too bad.

But most disappointingly, for much of the film there's no plot to speak of, and the story rambles for no good reason.

The serial killer plot is poorly done, unlikely, and while the ending is somewhat interestingly done, in the final analysis I think unnecessary and too clever by half. I feel instead that this film would have worked much better with Richard Crenna going after a single murder in the same awful place full of crime and the immorality that eats at him, and trying to pin it on Paul Williams much as he does already.

Reviewed by Scott LeBrun 7 / 10

"I direct people to things that they're looking for."

Richard Crenna is once again solid as a rock, playing a dedicated police sergeant named Boyd. Working the mean streets of Toronto, he has a distaste for the way the world has gone to seed. He also has a vendetta against slimy, diminutive pimp Julius Kurtz (an oddly, but amusingly cast Paul Williams), and would love nothing more than to pin SOMETHING on him. When a rooftop sniper begins methodically taking out hookers, it's up to Boyd to solve the case. Giving him assistance are veteran prostitute Monica Page (Linda Sorensen) and sassy undercover detective Sandy MacAuley (Belinda J. Montgomery).

"Stone Cold Dead" is based on the novel "The Sin Sniper" by Hugh Garner, and written for the screen by George Mendeluk, making his filmmaking debut. It's particularly interesting for a Canadian audience, to see the sleazier sights and sounds of late 70s Toronto. In general, it doesn't tell a *great* story, necessarily (some people will likely figure out the identity of the sniper ahead of time), but it *is* entertaining, offering a fair amount of grit. It combines elements of the Italian murder mysteries known as "Gialli", crime dramas, and exploitation cinema, and viewers will delight in the abundant nudity and sordid (ultimately sad) aspect to the tale being told. It's greatly enhanced by a fine score by under rated Canadian composer Paul Zaza. There are even some nice little touches here and there, such as the ice skating sequence, and Boyds' method of feeding his fish at scheduled times by phoning his own number.

Crenna is well matched against Williams, who gets to play his slimy role with a bit of nuance and humour. Sorensen is well cast as the potential love interest for Boyd, and Montgomery is a real ball of fire as the female cop. She even gets to belt out two numbers. There are various other familiar faces present to any veteran viewer of Canadian cinema: Chuck Shamata, Alberta Watson, Monique Mercure, Jennifer Dale, Frank Moore, George Touliatos. Legendary Canadian boxer George Chuvalo has a brief cameo; also look fast for a young Michael Ironside at around the 82 minute mark (he's not seen clearly, but that voice is unmistakable).

Trashy, and pretty violent, "Stone Cold Dead" is very fine entertainment for people eager to check out some Canuxploitation.

Seven out of 10.

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