Midnight Cowboy

Midnight Cowboy

Director: John Schlesinger Cast: Dustin Hoffman, Jon Voight, Sylvia Miles
4.5 6

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Overview

Midnight Cowboy

Based on a James Leo Herlihy novel, British director John Schlesinger's first American film dramatized the small hopes, dashed dreams, and unlikely friendship of two late '60s lost souls. Dreaming of an easy life as a fantasy cowboy stud, cheerful Texas rube Joe Buck (Jon Voight) heads to New York City to be a gigolo, but he quickly discovers that hustling isn't what he thought it would be after he winds up paying his first trick (Sylvia Miles). He gets swindled by gimpy tubercular grifter Rico "Ratso" Rizzo (Dustin Hoffman) but, when Joe falls in the direst of straits, Ratso takes Joe into his condemned apartment so that they can help each other survive. Things start to look up when Joe finally lands his first legit female customer (Brenda Vaccaro) at a Warhol-esque party; Ratso's health, however, fails. Joe turns a final trick to get the money for one selfless goal: taking Ratso out of New York to his dream life in Miami. One of the first major studio films given the newly minted X rating for its then-frank portrayal of New York decadence, Midnight Cowboy was critically praised for Schlesinger's insight into American lives, with the intercut mosaic of Joe's memories and Ratso's dreams lending their characters and actions greater psychological complexity. While they may have been drawn by the seamy content (tame by current standards), the young late '60s audience responded to Joe's and Ratso's confusion amidst turbulent times and to the connection they make with each other despite their alienation from the surrounding culture. Midnight Cowboy became one of the major financial and artistic hits of 1969, winning Oscars for Best Picture (the first for an X-rated film), Best Director, and former blacklistee Waldo Salt's screenplay. Though the one-two punch of Midnight Cowboy and The Graduate (1967) proved Hoffman's range and Voight's Joe Buck made him a star, both lost Best Actor to classical cowboy John Wayne for True Grit. The film was later re-rated R by the MPAA.

Product Details

Release Date: 02/21/2006
UPC: 0027616135988
Original Release: 1969
Rating: R
Source: Mgm (Video & Dvd)
Region Code: 1
Presentation: [Wide Screen]
Sound: [Dolby Digital Mono, Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround]
Time: 1:53:00

Special Features

Closed Caption; Audio commentary by producer Jerome Hellman; "After Midnight: Reflecing on the classic 35 years later" documentary; "Controversy and acclaim" documentary; "Celebrating schlesinger" featurette; Photo gallery

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Dustin Hoffman Enrico "Ratso" Rizzo
Jon Voight Joe Buck
Sylvia Miles Cass
John McGiver O'Daniel
Brenda Vaccaro Shirley
Barnard Hughes Towny
Ruth White Sally Buck
Jennifer Salt Annie
Gil Rankin Woodsy Niles
T. Tom Marlow Little Joe
George Epperson Ralph
Al Scott Cafeteria Manager
Linda Davis Mother on Bus
J.T. Masters Old Cowhand
Arlene Reeder Old Lady
Georgann Johnson Rich Lady
Anthony Holland TV Bishop
Bob Balaban The Young Student
Jan Tice Freaked-Out Lady
Paul Benjamin Bartender
Peter Scalia Grocer
Arthur Anderson Hotel Clerk
Tina Scala Laundromat Lady
Alma Felix Laundromat Ladies
Richard Clarke Escort Service Man
Ann Thomas The Frantic Lady
Al Stetson Bus Driver
Viva Gretel McAlbertson
Gastone Rossilli Hansel McAlbertson
Paul Jabara At the Party
International Velvet Actor
Cecelia Lipson Actor
Taylor Mead At the Party
Paul Morrissey At the Party
Jonathan Kramer Jackie
Gary Owens Young Joe
M. Emmet Walsh Actor
Paul Jasmin Party Guest
Ultra Violet At the Party
Joan Murphy Waitress

Technical Credits
John Schlesinger Director
John Barry Score Composer
Irving Buchman Makeup
Dick Smith Special Effects
Jerome Hellman Producer
Adam Holender Cinematographer
Richard C. Kratina Camera Operator
John Robert Lloyd Production Designer
Vic Ramos Casting
Hugh A. Robertson Editor
Ann Roth Costumes/Costume Designer
Waldo Salt Screenwriter
Philip Smith Set Decoration/Design
Kenneth Utt Associate Producer

Scene Index

Disc #1 -- Midnight Cowboy
1. Start [3:54]
2. Long and Lonely Road [8:50]
3. Welcome to New York [5:43]
4. One Gorgeous Chick [6:31]
5. A New Friend [2:41]
6. "I'm Walkin' Here!" [2:05]
7. The Holiest of Scams [5:56]
8. Dog-Eat-Dog-World [4:44]
9. A New Approach [4:34]
10. A Poor Arrangement [4:54]
11. The Only One [1:33]
12. The Name Is Rico [3:25]
13. A Hustler Without Hustle [4:23]
14. Scrounging for a Living] [3:33]
15. A High-Class Hookup [2:01]
16. Living the Dream [2:30]
17. Cold, Harsh Reality [3:02]
18. Last Chance for Cash [3:22]
19. Visiting the Past [4:22]
20. A Wacko Party [6:35]
21. A New Client [3:56]
22. First Time for Everything [1:54]
23. Things Ending in Y [2:50]
24. Word Finally Spreds [1:18]
25. Too Sick to Walk [3:34]
26. A Desperate House Call [4:06]
27. Mami or Bust [3:46]
28. Peace at Last [7:00]

Customer Reviews

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4.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 6 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I have always found this movie riveting, not squalid for squalid's sake... I didn't find the reality of it sickening, as maybe others might have. The acting drew you right in... you didn't find yourself checking your watch, as everything fit together so well. This will always be a gem of a movie from my point of view!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
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Guest More than 1 year ago
A movie plenty of the images in the style of the decade of 1960¿s as the psychedelic party, but over all with an excessive taste for squalid scenes that not ever are fully justified, as the terrible ominous meal of Jon Voigth at the same table with a woman, a child we suppose at first to be his son, and a mouse she finally shows, suggestive of we don¿t dare what, and that makes viewing the film almost insufferable. These situations are transcended by a general high quality but as it were, today this film is some delayed.