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Thunderbolt and Lightfoot Details


As much an eccentric character study as a road movie, Michael Cimino's directorial debut follows the adventures of a quartet of misfits in their life of crime. Retired thief Thunderbolt (Clint Eastwood) and sweet drifter Lightfoot (Jeff Bridges) meet cute when Thunderbolt jumps into Lightfoot's stolen car to escape a gunman. The pair embarks on an oddball journey to get Thunderbolt's loot from an old robbery before his former associates, the sadistic Red (George Kennedy) and cretinous Goody (Geoffrey Lewis), get to it first, but all four are too late; the one-room schoolhouse hiding place has apparently vanished. So instead, the four play house and work legit jobs while they plot to rob the same place Thunderbolt and Red hit before. Although the plan goes awry, Thunderbolt and Lightfoot discover that they may still have succeeded-or so they think. As the easy-going mediator between the two, Eastwood's Thunderbolt was a move away from his tough cop-westerner image; his audience accepted this then-atypical performance enough to turn Thunderbolt and Lightfoot into a moderate hit. Bridges received his second Best Supporting Actor Oscar nomination, but Cimino turned down a subsequent deal with Eastwood, moving instead to his artistic peak with Cimino (1978) and career nadir with Cimino (1980). ~ Lucia Bozzola, Rovi

  • Release date:May 23, 1974


Awarded by
Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences Jeff Bridges Best Supporting Actor 1974 Nominee


Clint Eastwood
as John "Thunderbolt" Doherty
Jeff Bridges
as Lightfoot
George Kennedy
as Red Leary
Geoffrey Lewis
as Goody
Catherine Bach
as Melody
Gary Busey
as Curly
Vic Tayback
as Mario
Roy Jenson
as Dunlop
Leslie Oliver
as Teenager
Burton Gilliam
as Welder
Luanne Roberts
as Suburban Housewife
Erica Hagen
as Waitress
Titos Vandis
as Counterman
Stuart Nisbet
as Couple at Gas Station
Dub Taylor
as Station Attendant
Gene Elman
as Tourist
Gregory Walcott
as Used Car Salesman
Claudia Lennear
as Secretary
Virginia Baker
Bill McKinney
as Crazy Driver
June Fairchild
as Gloria
Mark Montgomery
as Teenager
Cliff Emmich
as Fat Man
Karen Lamm
as Girl on Motorcycle


Michael Cimino
Michael Cimino
Frank Stanley
Dee Barton
Composer (Music Score)
Ferris Webster
Tambi Larsen
Art Director
Richard Portman
Sound/Sound Designer
Bert Hallberg
Sound/Sound Designer
Sass Bedig
Special Effects
Charles Okun
First Assistant Director
Buddy Van Horn