The Golden Gate Murders (1979)

TV Movie   |    |  Crime, Mystery, Thriller


The Golden Gate Murders (1979) Poster

In San Francisco, a police detective, aided by a Catholic nun, investigates the case of a priest who falls to his death from the Golden Gate bridge.


6.6/10
201

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Director:

Walter Grauman

Writer:

David J. Kinghorn

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7 April 2017 | XhcnoirX
7
| A pleasant surprise
When a priest falls to his death from San Fransisco's Golden gate bridge, it is ruled a suicide. But nun, and close friend, Susannah York doesn't believe it. Crusty police detective David Janssen gets assigned to her, to get her off the police department's back. He can't convince her of the suicide, so they start a routine investigation. He also starts to get suspicious, and as they are digging they uncover a potential serial killer, as well as feelings they each thought incapable of.

A made-for-TV thriller that wasn't given permission to shoot on the bridge itself. So cheap studio sets were used. But it doesn't really matter, David Janssen ('Richard Diamond, Private Detective', 'The Fugitive') and Susannah York ('They Shoot Horses, Don't They?') are great and have excellent chemistry. This was one of Janssen's last movies, he died soon after this movie was released, but he's great, he basically plays an older, more worldweary version of his iconic Richard Diamond character, only this time the one-liners are more cynical and blunter. And watch out for a cameo by Dirty Harry dressed up as a cat :)

Director Walter Grauman ('The Untouchables') and DoP Jack Swain ('Cannon') were TV veterans and it shows. There's nothing spectacular about the movie's directing or looks, but it's professional and effective, and because of having to use sets for the Golden Gate bridge, they turn it into a bit of an advantage by accentuating the claustrophobic, eerie qualities of a bridge covered in fog. The climax is brief but satisfactory, however the epilogue is overly sugary. All in all tho, I was pleasantly surprised. Recommended.

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