Saturday, September 11, 2010

52-Pick-Up, by Elmore Leonard

(pb; 1974)

From the back cover:

"Detroit businessman Harry Mitchell was having a mid-life crisis. He had an attractive wife at home. He had a voluptuous girlfriend on the side. And now he had a problem with porno movies.

"He was in one.

"A man with a stocking over his head and a .38 in his hand wanted a hundred grand to keep Harry's picture out of circulation. But the hoods behind this blackmail scam made a big mistake when they fingered Harry Mitchell for their pigeon.

"Because Harry Mitchell was the type of guy who played every game by nobody's rules but his own. And the more they got him mad, the more certain it was that the only pay-off Harry planned was getting even."


Taut, plot corkscrew-y, riveting, edgy crime thriller, with characters and a denouement you're not likely to forget any time soon.

Excellent work from a top-notch writer.

Check this out.

The film version was released stateside on November 7, 1986.

Roy Scheider played Harry Mitchell. Ann-Margaret played Barbara Mitchell. Kelly Preston played Cini.

John Glover played Alan Raimy. Robert Trebor played Leo Franks. Clarence Williams III played Bobby Shy. Vanity played Doreen. Lonny Chapman played Jim O'Boyle. Doug McClure played Mark Arveson.

Ron Jeremy (billed as Ron Jeremy Hyatt) played "Party Goer". Other porn star "Party Goer" cameos included: Amber Lynn, Tom Byron, Sharon Mitchell and Herschel Savage (billed as Harvey Cowen).

John Frankenheimer directed the film, from a screenplay by book author Elmore Leonard and John Steppling.

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