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Twilight's Last Gleaming
Burt Lancaster stars as the Air Force general who seizes control of a nuclear stockpile to force the US President (Charles Durning) to tell the truth about the Vietnam war, in Robert Aldrich's thunderous political thriller.
Director: Robert Aldrich
High among idiosyncratic auteur Robert Aldrich’s most powerful and intense dramas, Twilight’s Last Gleaming is a thunderous political thriller and race-against-time doomsday classic. Burt Lancaster stars as the Air Force general Lawrence Dell who seizes control of a stockpile of nuclear missiles to force the US President (Charles Durning) to tell the truth about the Vietnam war. As negotiations get ever more desperate, General MacKenzie (Richard Widmark) leads an elite fighting team into the complex to disable Dell and his team directly.
Hollywood legend Robert Aldrich decamped to Germany to make this nail-biting classic, funded by TV company Lorimar Productions, after he struggled to obtain backing from the major studios. His utilisation of split-screen visuals meant the film failed to find a home-video audience upon its release, but in the era of widescreen displays is now destined to become a cult favourite of 70s paranoia cinema.