honestly has Charles Bronson ever made a bad movie? ok, ok, has he ever made a movie that wasn't bigtime entertaining? exactly. this time out Chuck ends up full speed on twin rails of murder, intrigue, double, no, make that triple crosses, weird beards, redman savages and extra whacky secret spy shenanigans in Breakheart Pass.
the story starts off with Bronson being detained at a rail station by some stuff shirt army troops and an immediately noticable slimey governor played by Richard "Col. Troutman" Crenna. seems that they have commissioned a train to travel through snow country to reach a military fort stricken with disease. supposedly this train is to provide fresh healthy enlisted men and medical aid. yeah supposedly. after an encounter at the rail station water hole they take Bronson aboard as a prisoner because supposedly he is wanted for arson and card cheating and having the meanest mustache this side of the old miss. the seemingly good guys on the train, governor bag O' lies, an army major (Ed Lauter), a lowdown lawman (legendary Ben Johnson) and a seedy preacher (Bill McKinney of Deliverance "squeal boy!" fame) don't treat Chuck very well off the bat but guess what? someone starts offing lesser characters left and right and then everyone wants to be Bronson's best bud. they've all likely seen the guys' movies and know that in a pinch with the stench of death everywhere, few are better than Chuck. the plot then starts to thicken and the pace starts to quicken as we're treated to a few games of human plinko with people being mysteriously thrown from the train and pingo pongoing down some high as hell bridge supports. then a little literal backstabbing, and a great mass murder scene in which every one of the enlisted men on board is sent to a canyon grave in one single swoop. i'm talking crasho el smasho the caboose is kaput! along with a bunch of mooks who were never gonna be integral the the twisting plot of this thing anyways.
once this thing get's rolling full tilt it's pretty clear that the big mystery is that everyone on board, save for the "bad guy" Bronson, is actually a REAL bad guy! and this train ain't hauling no dull medical supplies but something of much more interest. especially to this weird beard cat named Calhoun and a bunch of savage injuns! one or more of the passengers is in proverbial cahoots with the caveman lookalike Calhoun and the actual cargo is there to be secretly and illegally dealt to this rowdy row of rogue rapscallions! they had the plan, the train, the cargo and the deal in place but the sonsabitches forgot just one thing, Charles Bronson. and ultimately bad guys find out what many had found out before them, that you never ever f@*# with Chuck.
give this gem a look, it's certainly no Deathwish, Chato's Land, Dirty Dozen or even White Buffalo but i ask again folks...has Charles Bronson ever made a movie that wasn't bigtime entertainment?
whether it's a New York subway, a Nazi prison camp or on the top of a speeding deathtrain in snow country, Chuck kicks ass at kickin' ass. points for the snowball toss and extra points for the baddie ricocheting off the bridge supports!