No Mercy

(Richard Pearce, USA, 1986)


When Alfred Hitchcock handcuffed Robert Donat and Madeleine Carroll together and sent them scuttling for their life in The 39 Steps (1935), he created the perfect plot device for an action-thriller with a central love-hate relationship.

In No Mercy, director Richard Pearce tries the same trick with Richard Gere and Kim Basinger in the savage swamps of the American South – and with mixed results.

Stealing the show is the handsome villain played by Jeroen Krabbé (from The Prince of Tides, 1991) as a merciless patriarch with old-fashioned ideas about eye-for-eye justice.

MORE Pearce: Leap of Faith

© Adrian Martin November 1992

Film Critic: Adrian Martin
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