Eric Red kicked in the doors and smacked me around in the mid-1980s. His scripts for NEAR DARK and, in particular, THE HITCHER were the stuff of geek dreams. His writing had precision-tooled, B-movie mechanics and plots built with a merciless, gleeful desire to give the people what they want in ways that surprised us.
His best work, in my humble opinion, emerged when he directed his own hit-man masterpiece, COHEN & TATE, where mean and funny and brutal and thrilling all hold hands and sing “Kumbaya” as Roy Scheider (fucking Roy Scheider!) and Adam Baldwin duke it out over the delivery of a 12-year-old eyewitness to their mafia bosses.