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Shoot to Kill

Theatrical release poster
Directed by Roger Spottiswoode
Produced by Daniel Petrie, Jr.
Ron Silverman
Written by Harv Zimmel
Starring Sidney Poitier
Tom Berenger
Kirstie Alley
Clancy Brown
Music by John Scott
Cinematography Michael Chapman
Editing by George Bowers
Garth Craven
Distributed by Touchstone Pictures
Release date(s) February 12, 1988
Running time 109 min.
Country U.S.A.
Language English

Shoot to Kill (also known internationally as Deadly Pursuit) is an adventure thriller movie released in 1988 starring Sidney Poitier and Tom Berenger. The film was directed by Roger Spottiswoode.



A man is discovered breaking into his own jewelery shop in the dead of night. Questioned closely, it is discovered that his wife is being held hostage at their home by Steve (Clancy Brown), a brutal extortionist who demands the diamonds in the shop's safe in exchange for the woman's life. After Steve kills the family maid, FBI agent Warren Stantin (Sidney Poitier) hands over the diamonds, but Steve kills the jeweler's wife anyway, and escapes.

Feeling that he has failed, Stantin becomes obsessed with finding Steve, and he chases Steve into the rugged forests of the state of Washington, where Steve joins up with a group of sportsmen who plan to trek into the wilderness on a fishing trip. Steve's plan is to kill them and force their guide, Sarah (Kirstie Alley), to lead him through the wilderness to the Canadian border.

Stantin must team up with Sarah's mountain-man boyfriend Jonathan Knox (Tom Berenger) to pursue Steve. Jonathan doesn't believe city slicker Stantin can keep up on a tough cross-country hike that includes some rock climbing, and Stantin is determined to prove himself. They pursue Steve and Sarah into the wilderness and eventually to the streets of Vancouver. The movie also featured a chase scene aboard the BC Ferries Queen of Vancouver. After a long chase, Stantin manages to shoot Steve in an underwater struggle.



In a fight with Tom Berenger, Sidney Poitier says he has been up against the Mafia, the Ku Klux Klan and the KGB. He has: in Let's Do It Again (1975), In the Heat of the Night (1967) and Little Nikita (1988).

The killer's identity is not revealed until midway through the film. He attempts to evade detection by killing a member of a hiking expedition and taking his place. To keep the audience guessing as to the true identity of the villain, some of the hikers were played by actors known for playing bad guys: notably Clancy Brown, Frederick Coffin, and Andrew Robinson.

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