Uncovering Curiosities: Walter Hill’s TRESPASS

In 1992 Walter Hill took a dusty old script written by Bob Gale and Robert Zemeckis and transformed it into an action-packed contemporary version of The Treasure Of The Sierra Madre. That script was called The Looters, but a post Rodney King world saw the film renamed Trespass. It may have failed at the box office on its initial release due to a poor release schedule and the LA Riots, but Hill’s film still shines almost 30 years on and it offers-up fun performances and some seriously punchy action. 

Bill Paxton and William Sadler play a Arkansas firemen who uncover a map pinpointing where gold is hidden in an abandoned apartment building. They go in search of the loot only to run into a gang lead by Ice-T and Ice Cube. Shit gets serious as the two Bills attempt to score the gold and make it out alive. 

Walter Hill brings his usual muscular direction to proceedings, crafting some serious action which is well augmented by Ry Cooder’s guitar-driven score. One of the standout creative flourishes is Hills use of video camera footage, intercut through the action, while he also made excellent use of the burgeoning mobile phone technology. 

A wonderfully tight action film, Trespass is a forgotten film which will hopefully find a whole new audience on blu-ray. It might not get mentioned in the same breath as other Walter Hill films, but there’s much to enjoy in this energetic actioner.