1964, Janus Films, 115 min, Dir: Bryan Forbes

Mira (Kim Stanley), an opportunistic psychic, and her pushover husband, Bill (Richard Attenborough), concoct a scheme to kidnap a rich couple’s child, and then gain celebrity by pretending to have clairvoyant hunches about the child’s whereabouts. When the police begin to question Mira and Bill - and when Bill becomes paranoid that Mira doesn’t want the child to be found alive - an eerie, spine-tingling thriller unfolds.

1977, Paramount, 122 min, Dir: William Friedkin

Friedkin’s most visually awesome film follows small-time crook Roy Scheider from Brooklyn to the sweltering South American jungles, where he lands a job hauling nitroglycerine with hard-luck losers Bruno Cremer and Francisco Rabal. Rather than simply remake Henri-Georges Clouzot’s famed WAGES OF FEAR, Friedkin re-imagined the story as a cosmic vision of man vs. nature, climaxing in the mind-bending image of Scheider and crew literally pushing a loaded truck across a spindly rope bridge.

1985, Park Circus/MGM, 116 min, Dir: William Friedkin

Director William Friedkin's startling, exhilarating thriller stars William Petersen as a hot-shot federal agent out to bust ruthless counterfeiter Willem Dafoe (in a revelatory, tour-de-force performance). Along the way, they collide with John Turturro as a drug mule addicted to Pepto-Bismol and Dean Stockwell as Dafoe's morally ambivalent mouthpiece. As dynamic and unnerving as THE FRENCH CONNECTION a decade earlier, TO LIVE AND DIE IN L.A. is Friedkin at his very best - a turbo-charged ride through an imploding, morally corrupt American landscape.

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