Rolling Thunder: One of Tarantino’s favorite movies is coming to 4K Blu-ray

Connie Queline

Rolling Thunder: One of Tarantino’s favorite movies is coming to 4K Blu-ray

1977’s Rolling Thunder, one of Quentin Tarantino’s favorite films of all time, is getting a fully loaded 4K Blu-ray.

If you know your Quentin Tarantino lore, you’ll know that one of his favourite films of all time is John Flynn’s Rolling Thunder. A gritty revenge flick, the 1977 movie was such an influence on Tarantino that he named his short-lived distribution company, Rolling Thunder Pictures, after it. He explains his love of the film in detail in his epic film book, Cinema Speculation. Now, the film is set to get a 4K special edition courtesy of Shout Factory, which comes packed with extras.

If you’ve never seen it, Rolling Thunder is a pretty incredible film. Paul Schrader originally wrote it, but it was heavily rewritten by Heywood Gould (Cocktail). It follows a NAM P.O.W., Major Charles Rane (William Devane), who returns to his home in San Antonio after seven years in Hanoi. Having long come to terms with the fact that he was unlikely ever to return home, Rane conducts himself with an “I’m already dead” style that’s genuinely unnerving. He initially tries to make things back home work but discovers that his wife has fallen in love with another man, while his son doesn’t know him, and Rane has no idea how to relate to him. Tragedy strikes when a group of thugs invade Rane’s home in the hope of stealing the 2,555 silver dollars he was given by the town (one for each day he served in captivity). Rane, having a death wish, refuses to tell them where the coins are, even after they take his hand off with a garbage disposer, and they wind up killing Rane’s estranged wife and son. 

With whatever was left of his humanity gone, Rane goes on one of the most brutal quests for vengeance ever put to screen. The film’s climax is especially memorable, with Rane recruiting one of the men who served under him, Tommy Lee Jones’ Johnny, to help him waste the entire gang that killed his family. There’s a much-referenced scene near the end when, after Rane reveals to Johnny that he knows where the men who killed his family are, the latter, with hardly any reaction at all save for the line “I’ll just get my gear,” calmly goes to his closet, assembles an arsenal, and ditches his (annoying) family to go help Rane “clean them up.”  It’s chilling stuff, and if you’re so inclined, this 4K set sounds amazing.

Here are the specs from Blu-ray.com:

  • NEW 4K RESTORATION OF THE FILM FROM THE ORIGINAL CAMERA NEGATIVE
  • NEW Audio Commentary With Screenwriter/Novelist Heywood Gould And Author/Film Historian C. Courtney Joyner
  • NEW Audio Commentary With Filmmakers Jackson Stewart And Francis Galluppi
  • NEW “Lean And Mean: The Early Films Of John Flynn” – An Interview With Author/Film Historian C. Courtney Joyner
  • NEW “Coming Home To War: Scoring Rolling Thunder” – An Interview With Composer Barry De Vorzon
  • “The Making Of Rolling Thunder” – Featuring Interviews With Actors William Devane And Tommy Lee Jones And Writers Paul Schrader And Heywood Gould
  • Trailers From Hell – Filmmaker Eli Roth On Rolling Thunder
  • Theatrical Trailer
  • TV Spot
  • Radio Spots
  • Still Gallery
  • Audio: English DTS-HD Master Audio Mono
  • Optional English subtitles for the main feature

Will you be picking up Rolling Thunder? Let us know in the comments!

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