Greatest Film Scenes
and Moments

Cutter's Way (1981)


Written by Tim Dirks

Title Screen
Movie Title/Year and Scene Descriptions

Cutter's Way (1981) (aka Cutter and Bone)

In Czech filmmaker Ivan Passer's crime thriller:

  • the amazing opening slow-motion sequence (under the credits, with music by Jack Nitzsche) of a Santa Barbara, CA main street Old Spanish Days Fiesta parade (that slowly changed from b/w to color) - with the camera following a blonde twirling in a white frilly dress
  • the sequence then wiped into a day and night-time shot of the exterior of a hotel (labeled El Encanto in neon) - to introduce one of the film's two main characters, with a side close-up of the chin-mustache of laconic yacht-salesman-beach-bum Richard Bone (Jeff Bridges) while he was touching up with a woman's electric shaver following hiring out his gigolo services to a blonde (Nina Van Pallandt), the wife of a boat customer, for a one-night stand
  • afterwards, a silhouetted figure wearing sun-glasses was witnessed dumping 17 year-old sex-crime victim Vickie into a garbage can in a dark alley on a rainy night
  • the scene of embittered, self-righteous, drunken, one-eyed, one-armed, one-legged, crazed and angry Vietnam vet Alexander Cutter (John Heard) crashing into his neighbor's car while returning home with an expired license, and later becoming completely obsessed over confronting the girl's killer - believing the real suspect to be elite and menacing oil businessmen J. J. Cord (Stephen Elliott)
  • the scene of Maureen "Mo" Cutter (Lisa Eichhorn) telling her disgruntled husband that his plan to blackmail/extort Cord regarding the girl's murder was itself a dumb crime: "You're not some saint avenging the sins of the Earth, you know. Alex. And if you are, what am I doing here? Oh, I know. I'm like your leg. Your leg! Sending messages to your brain when there's nothing there anymore" - before being viciously slapped
  • the stunning concluding scene of Cutter riding heroically (and tragically) on a white stallion within Cord's guarded residential mansion during a large garden party - and lethally crashing into Cord's study window where Bone had just learned that Cord was the female's killer - inspiring the usually-uncommitted and reluctant Bone to take up the fight and shoot Cord with the weapon in Cutter's dead hand - to abruptly end the film
Cutter's Heroic Ride to the Death in a Doomed Effort to Kill J.J. Cord
Bone's Killing of Cord with the Gun in Cutter's Hand

Fiesta Days Parade

Gigolo/Beach Bum Richard Bone Shaving

Bone Witnessing Sex-Crime Victim Body-Dumping

Cutter's Wife Mo Speaking with Husband


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