***Sean Connery's first credited movie role*** a must see for Connery fans
Joe 'Tom' Yateley is an ex-convict. Trying to leave his past behind, he decides to starts working for the Hawlett Trucking company, which transports gravel. It's an aggressive company, where speed is everything. Doing too less runs in a day? You're out. Red is the most experienced trucker, he can do 18 runs in a day. Tom soon makes friends with Lucy, the secretary, and Gino, a driver. But the record of Red intrigues him and he wants to break it. Gino advises against it, but he helps Tom when he wants to go through with it. Soon trouble begins when Red and the other drivers form an united front against Tom. Just when Tom has enough and decides to pack his bags, Lucy tells him Gino had a terrible accident. She also tells about the corruption of Hawlett Trucking.
- CAST WISE,THIS IS THE BRITISH "MAGNIFICENT SEVEN"
This movie is from the glory days of British film-making and is as tough as a truck driver's fist and there are plenty of those flying around in this hard as nails action flick. What a cast, this is like a British "MAGNIFICENT SEVEN" with its cast of stars to be.Sean Connery, Patrick McGoohan, David McCallum to name but three all support the late, great Welsh actor Stanley Baker in one of his greatest starring roles as the tough lorry driver fighting corruption.
- British truckers driving at breakneck speed on narrow lanes
Did stuff like this really happen in England during the era this film was made? If so, the roads must have been littered with the remains of dead truck drivers and and anyone else unfortunate enough to get in their way. The movie has a certain quality to it. The truckers have to drive like hell drivers because that's the only way they can get paid. I think Humphrey Bogart made a trucker movie, but it was nothing like this. This movie kicks ass. Which isn't to say that it's really great or anything, but the last scenes are truly phenomenal.
- Brilliant, underrated piece of British 50s social realism
This underrated film, directed by Cy Endfield (Zulu) is a dour, realistic drama about an ex-con (Stanley Baker) who goes to work as a lorry driver for a crooked haulage company, only to discover that the ruthless boss and his foreman are cheating the drivers of huge amounts of money, and forcing them to work in dangerous conditions, resulting in the death of several drivers.
It benefits from a taut, BAFTA nominated screenplay by Endfield and John Kruse (better known as a documentary film maker), which pulls no punches in its realistic depiction of the genuinely life-threatening conditions that these lorry drivers had to endure.
Its chief asset, however, is the remarkably strong cast. Stanley Baker, as the ex-con determined to expose his corrupt bosses, brings a quiet strength and sincerity to his role as a basically decent guy who makes the wrong choices. It is interesting to compare Baker's performance here with his acclaimed portrayal of the ruthless, hardened gangster in Joseph Losey's 'The Criminal', made three years later.
Patrick McGoohan shines in an early role as the psychopathic lead driver, exuding genuine menace. And as for the priceless supporting cast: Herbert Lom, Sid James, Gordon Jackson, and Sean Connery in one of his earliest roles..need I say more. To sum up, Hell Drivers is a minor classic of post-war British cinema, and deserves more recognition than it has formerly received.
Cy Endfield (as C. Raker Endfield)
Writing credits (in alphabetical order)
Cy Endfield (as C. Raker Endfield)
John Kruse also story
Cast (in credits order) verified as complete
Stanley Baker .... Tom Yately
Peggy Cummins .... Lucy, Hawlett Trucking Secretary
Patrick McGoohan .... C. 'Red' Redman, Foreman (Truck 1)
Herbert Lom .... Gino Rossi
William Hartnell .... Cartley, Hawlett Manager
Wilfrid Lawson .... Ed, Hawlett Mechanic
Sid James .... Dusty, Truck Driver (as Sidney James)
Jill Ireland .... Jill, Pull In Waitress
Alfie Bass .... Tinker, Truck Driver
Gordon Jackson .... Scottie
David McCallum .... Jimmy Yately, Tom's brother
Sean Connery .... Johnny Kates
Wensley Pithey .... Pop, Truck 4 Driver
George Murcell .... Tub, Truck Driver
Marjorie Rhodes .... Ma West, Landlady
Vera Day .... Blonde at Dance
Beatrice Varley .... Mrs. Yately, Tom's Mother
Robin Bailey .... Hawlett Assistant Manager
Ben Williams .... Harry, Hawlett Gateman
Jerry Stovin .... Chick Keithley
John Horsley .... Doctor Attending Gino
Marianne Stone .... Nurse Attending Gino
Ronald Clarke .... Barber Joe
rest of cast listed alphabetically
Charles Lamb .... Cafe Owner (uncredited)
Hal Osmond .... Station Ticket Clerk (uncredited)
Jean St. Clair .... Spinster (uncredited)
Ian Wilson .... Gibson, Hawlett Paymaster (uncredited)
Also Known As:
Hard Drivers (1957)
Runtime: 108 min / USA:91 min
Color: Black and White
Sound Mix: Mono (Westrex Recording System)