Jeff Bridges is Bone, John Heard is Cutter, a crippled Vietnam War veteran. One evening Bone is witness to the dumping of the body of a girl. Later, at a parade, he recognizes the person he believes is the killer, JJ Kord, an oil company hotshot. Together with the dead girl's sister they decide to seek justice.
It's a darker and more unlikable role for Jeff Bridges than what he had usually played until then. John Heard shines in his part, and Lisa Eichhorn as Heard's girlfriend but with feelings for Bridges, is also excellent.
Some movies you forget as soon as you walk out of the cinema or put the dvd back in it's cover, other movies stay with you. Cutter's Way is one of those. It has a powerful ending, made better by not pulling a Psycho: five minutes at the police station where everything is solved and explained. The film flopped when it was released in 81, maybe a sign that this would be a decade all about winning, and who cares about the losers.