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Film / Mr. Majestyk

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Mr. Majestyk is a 1974 action drama film directed by Richard Fleisher and starring Charles Bronson. The screenplay was written by Elmore Leonard, who later adapted it into a novelization of the same name.

Vincent Majestyk (Bronson) is a Vietnam vet and ex-con who turns to the simple life in rural Colorado, running a watermelon farm. After kicking a local hood off his property, Majestyk is arrested for assault and while being transported to jail, makes a getaway with a mafia assassin who Majestyk enrages. Vincent now has to deal with apathetic police, the local criminals, and an angry hit man, with only the local Mexican migrants who work on his farm to help him.

Tropes used by the film:

  • Alliterative Title: Mr. Majestyk
  • Apathetic Citizens: Majestyk needs more help to get his crops harvested, but when news of Renda spread in the community, no one wants to risk their lives to help Vincent. They sympathize but refuse to stick their necks out.
  • Bad Boss: Renda lures Lundy, his most competent goon into a trap in an attempt to find Majestyk. Bobby even calls Renda on this.
  • Big Bad Wannabe: For all of Bobby's arrogance and attempts towards trying to intimidate Majestyk and fit into Renda's gang, neither man takes him seriously and he is shown to be horribly out of his depth when dealing with both of them.
  • Call to Agriculture: Vincent Majestyk keeps telling everyone who is hassling him that all he wants to do is return to his farm and harvest his melons, but none of them will leave him in peace.
  • Car Chase: Majestyk's truck with a couple of Renda's cars in pursuit to start the climax.
  • Car Fu: Lundy rams Vince's foreman Larry with his car, breaking both his legs. Later, during the Car Chase, Vince uses his truck to ram a carload of thugs off the mountain road, where it promptly explodes.
  • Contract on the Hitman: At the climax, Majestyk corners Renda at his country lodge with no intention of leaving until one is dead.
  • Cool Car: Majestyk's canary-yellow 1968 Ford F-100 pickup truck, a used model bought right off the lot which actually performed all the normally axle-busting stunts seen in the film.
  • The Dragon: Lundy.
  • Dude, Where's My Respect?: Averted. Bobby Kopas tries act like a big shot with Renda for dropping charges on Majestyk to get him out of prison and vulnerable to a hit. Renda immediately is turned off by Bobby and even more so when anything Bobby reports on is wrong concerning Majestyk in that not only does his farm have workers, there are undercover cops nearby. Renda throws Bobby out of the car shortly afterword.
  • Even Evil Has Standards: Bobby turns on Renda because even he was bothered by the fact that Renda intentionally lead Lundy into a trap that got him killed.
  • Every Car Is a Pinto: During the ambush of the Vulnerable Convoy, several police cars explode for no reason. Later, during the Car Chase, Vince uses his truck to ram a carload of thugs off the mountain road, where it promptly explodes.
  • Evil Is Petty: When Renda's men cannot find Majestyk, he has them machine gun his watermelon crop in an act of petty vindictiveness.
  • Groin Attack: When Bobby refuses to get off his land, Majestyk slams him the balls with the butt of his own shotgun.
  • Honor Before Reason: Renda makes it a point to kill Majestyk, no matter how difficult or short sided it may be.
  • Huge Guy, Tiny Girl: Frank Renda is a big husky mob hit man. Wiley his girlfriend is far shorter and svelte.
  • It's Personal: After escaping, Renda makes it a point to kill Majestyk for turning down his offer. His aides even tell him about paying jobs awaiting him or how it's foolish to go through with this. Renda points out he's never killed for free, but this time he will. For himself.
  • Laser-Guided Karma: Both Renda and Bobby get this in the climax in different ways. Renda is ultimately killed after Bobby tricks him into falling for a trap-which is exactly what Renda had done to Lundy just a few mintues before hand. Bobby after harassing Majestyk and getting him arrested earlier in the film, is the one that is ultimately arrested in the climax after he tries to go after Majestyk with Renda and his crew. For a added bonus Majestyk says the exact same line to him in the end that he had said in the first scene "about being in the wrong business" as one last insult to Bobby.
  • Molotov Cocktail: During the attack on the Vulnerable Convoy, a Molotov cocktail is hurled under one the escorting police cars.
  • An Offer You Can't Refuse: Renda, mob assassin makes Majestyk such a deal, $25,000 to cut him free or die. Majestyk decides to Take a Third Option.
  • Pistol-Whipping: When Bobby refuses to get off his land, Majestyk slams him the balls with the butt of his own shotgun.
  • Police Are Useless: Played totally straight. In their attempts to protect Majestyk, the cops fail to protect Vince's friends, neighbors or his employees. Most of Majestyks watermelon crop is destroyed and even an undercover cop is killed in an ambush. Majestyk calls out the Police Captain on all this.
  • Politically Incorrect Villain: It is subtly implied Bobby trying to strong arm his workers on Majestyk's farm is based on racial prejudice towards the Hispanic workers Majestyk has working for him.
  • Revenge Before Reason: Renda is obsessed with personally getting revenge on Majestyk despite Lundy trying to tell him to just focus on his escape from the police or to just hire another hitman to deal with Majestyk. Renda makes several impulsive decisions based on his anger towards trying to go after Majestyk.
  • Shotguns Are Just Better: Majestyk's weapon of choice when he fights Renda and his gang.
  • Tranquil Fury When Majestyk sees the damage Renda has done to his watermelons, he never yells or screams but instead intensely clenches his fist into a tight ball
  • The Vietnam Vet: Majestyk is revealed to be a veteran of the Vietnam war.
  • Vulnerable Convoy: The mob tries to bust out Renda while he is being transported to the courthouse in the police bus.