Black Sunday
Black Sunday (1977)

With the help of international terrorists, angry Vietnam vet Lander plots to cause trouble at the Super Bowl by sending in a Goodyear Blimp armed with steel darts. An Israeli officer fights to prevent this violence.

Rated: R
Running Time:
Release Date: March 11, 1977
DVD Release Date: October 14, 2003
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Critic Score: 71% Rotten Tomatoes™ Critic Reviews

Consensus: A smart, tense thriller from director John Frankenheimer, Black Sunday succeeds on a technical level, even if it fails to bring its characters to vivid life.

Richard Corliss
TIME Magazine

Black Sunday may well make a bundle, thanks to the technical skill with which it manages its long-delayed payoff. But it is getting tiresome to be forced to admire, for want of anything else to do, the skill with which moviemakers jerk audiences around.

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Variety Staff

John Frankenheimer's film of Black Sunday is an intelligent and meticulous depiction of an act of outlandish terrorism -- the planned slaughter of the Super Bowl stadium audience.

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David Parkinson
Radio Times

The clash between police helicopters and a hijacked blimp is the highlight of the outstanding set pieces -- it's the sort of thing that Frankenheimer can do with one hand tied behind his back.

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Dave Kehr
Chicago Reader

Violence (more than 30 on-screen deaths) makes a poor substitute for suspense, while sloppy, rear projection work drains most of the excitement from the climax.

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David Pirie
Time Out

Unfortunately, all the major characters have a whiff of Hollywood artifice, largely because (as has happened too often before in his career) Frankenheimer gets carried away by their verbosity.

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Ken Hanke
Mountain Xpress (Asheville, NC)

The acting is good -- especially from Dern in his over-the-top mode -- and parts of the film are exciting. But I draw the line at finding it to be any sort of a classic.

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Gary Arnold
Washington Post

Black Sunday takes such a plodding literal-minded approach with an extravagant thriller premise that we have more than enough time to watch the gears working and all too often jamming.

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Vincent Canby
New York Times

Why doesn't it work for me? I suspect it has to do with the constant awareness that the story is more important than anybody in it.

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Sky Movies

Bruce Dern gives one of his best edgy performances as a Vietnam veteran recruited by the terrorists, while Robert Shaw, Marthe Keller and Fritz Weaver all impress their personalities on the action.

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More reviews for Black Sunday

Flixster Audience Score: 65% Flixster User Reviews
Alex roy
Tense, thrilling and highly entertaining action thriller, Black Sunday is one of the defining films of the 1970's. With a brilliant cast and a well crafted… More
Danny Rovira
John Frankenheimer's intelligent thrilling film based upon Thomas Harris's best selling novel. About an Israeli commando named Robert Kabakov, played… More
Tim Salmons
Pretty damned tense and enjoyable, although it runs slow in some parts.
Marcus Woolcott
Gave up halfway through. Very not exciting.
El Hombre Invisible
John Frankenheimer's thriller based on the novel by Thomas Harris, author of The Silence of the Lambs, about terrorists planning to cause mayhem at a Super… More
alan jay
Shaw, Dern and Keller's collective performances keep the suspense building to a thrilling and believable conclusion. Edge of your seat tense… More