S.2 E.3 - Duel (1971)

So we all know the stories. Spielberg was a wunderkind. He snuck onto the Universal lot as an 8 year-old with nothing more than a turtleneck, viewfinder and a suitcase full of candy bars and was immediately hired to design the Creature From the Black Lagoon and do re-writes on Magnificent Obsession. But the truth is that even The Beard started somewhere and anyone who's seen his episodes of Night Gallery knows that start was inauspicious at best.

So while now we can look back on Duel (1971) as a no-brainer, the 20th century's preeminent film entertainer being handed a story full of car chases, the reality that this movie exists at all, let alone this good, is actually absolutely insane. So what happened? How did Spielberg pull it out? And how did he almost never end up collaborating with John Williams? On the latest episode of Tracks of the Damned, the horror film commentary podcast, Patrick answers all this and asks the question: Where did all the country bumpkins go in Steven Spielberg movies?

He also interviews Steven Awalt, author of Steven Spielberg and Duel: The Making of a Film Career, and takes an even deeper dive into that dimension where Spielberg and horror merge. Plow ahead!

0:00 - 10:47 - Intro

10:48 - 1:42:32 - Commentary

1:42:33 - 2:12:25 - Interview

2:12:26 - 2:14:03 - Outro

James Laczkowski