The Border (1982 film)
Theatrical release poster
|Directed by||Tony Richardson|
|Produced by||Edgar Bronfman, Jr.|
|Written by||Deric Washburn
|Music by||Ry Cooder|
|Edited by||Robert K. Lambert|
|Distributed by||Universal Pictures|
|Running time||109 minutes|
|Budget||$22 million (estimated)|
|Box office||$6,118,683 (US)|
Immigration enforcement agent Smith (Jack Nicholson) lives in California with his wife (Valerie Perrine) in a trailer. She convinces him to move to a duplex in El Paso shared by her friend and border agent Cat (Harvey Keitel). She opens a charge account and starts to purchase expensive items like a water bed as she tries to build a dream home.
Cat gradually introduces Smith to the human smuggling operation he runs with their supervisor Red (Warren Oates). Though Smith initially declines to participate, his wife's free-spending ways make him finally take part in the operation. Meanwhile, a young Mexican mother that he has observed is detained, and while she is in their custody, one of Cat's drivers abducts her baby for an illegal adoption. Cat warns the driver not to do anything but transport people in trucks, and that if he runs drugs or babies, Cat will hurt him.
Smith finally realizes that Cat and Red are killing drivers who make money off side ventures or anyone who gets in their way. Smith makes it clear to Cat that he will not be a party to murder. In the film's climax, he is forced to kill Cat. He tracks down the kidnapped infant and returns it to its mother.
- Jack Nicholson as Charlie Smith
- Harvey Keitel as Cat
- Valerie Perrine as Marcy
- Warren Oates as Red
- Elpidia Carrillo as Maria
- Dirk Blocker as Beef
Vincent Canby of the New York Times said the movie "has the sort of predictable outrage and shape of a made-for-television movie. It has suspense but little excitement. Once the people and the situation have been introduced, there's not a single surprise in the film, nothing of the uncharacteristic sort that differentiates the adequate melodrama from one that is special and memorable. Like so many films prompted by real-life social problems, The Border is a movie in which the characters appear to have been created to fit the events. Missing is any sense of particularity, as well as the excitement that comes when the members of the audience are allowed to discover some sort of truth for themselves." 
- "The Border (1982) - Box office / business". Internet Movie Database. Retrieved March 19, 2011.
- "The Border (1982)". Box Office Mojo. Internet Movie Database. Retrieved March 19, 2011.
- Vincent Canby, "Jack Nicholson in 'The Border'" Jan. 29, 1982 http://www.nytimes.com/movie/review?res=9B07E4D71038F93AA15752C0A964948260
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