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The Hustler (1961)

 -  Drama | Sport  -  25 September 1961 (USA)
8.1
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Ratings: 8.1/10 from 52,360 users  
Reviews: 148 user | 89 critic

An up-and-coming pool player plays a long-time champion in a single high-stakes match.

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(screenplay), (screenplay), 1 more credit »
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Title: The Hustler (1961)

The Hustler (1961) on IMDb 8.1/10

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Top 250 #238 | Won 2 Oscars. Another 15 wins & 14 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
...
...
...
Myron McCormick ...
Charlie Burns
...
Findley
...
Big John
...
Preacher
Clifford A. Pellow ...
Turk (as Cliff Pellow)
...
Bartender
Gordon B. Clarke ...
Cashier
Alexander Rose ...
Score Keeper
Carolyn Coates ...
Waitress
Carl York ...
Young Hustler
...
Bartender
Edit

Storyline

"Fast" Eddie Felson is a small-time pool hustler with a lot of talent but a self-destructive attitude. His bravado causes him to challenge the legendary "Minnesota Fats" to a high-stakes match, but he loses in a heartbreaking marathon. Now broke and without his long-time manager, Felson faces an uphill battle to regain his confidence and his game. It isn't until he hits rock bottom that he agrees to join up with ruthless and cutthroat manager Bert Gordon. Gordon agrees to take him on the road to learn the ropes. But Felson soon realizes that making it to the top could cost him his soul, and perhaps his girlfriend. Will he decide that this is too steep a price to pay in time to save himself? Written by <jgp3553@yahoo.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

It delves without compromise into the hungers that lie deep within us all. See more »

Genres:

Drama | Sport

Certificate:

Unrated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

25 September 1961 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Robert Rossen's The Hustler  »

Box Office

Budget:

$2,000,000 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Westrex Recording System)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Although Jackie Gleason is billed second, he only appears in the film for about 20 minutes. See more »

Goofs

When Sarah walks into the bathroom, we see Bert Gordon in the mirror. Then when Eddie walks into the bathroom and sees Sarah on the floor, the sink and mirror have been moved to the left side of the room. See more »

Quotes

Big John: You Eddie Felson.
Fast Eddie: Who's he?
Big John: What's your game? Whaddaya shoot?
Fast Eddie: You name it, we shoot it.
Big John: Look, friend, I'm not trying to hustle. I don't never hustle people that walk in a poolroom with leather satchels. Don't try to hustle me.
Fast Eddie: Okay, I'm Eddie Felson. I shoot straight pool.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Mardi Gras: Spring Break (2011) See more »

Soundtracks

Hustler Theme
(1961) (uncredited)
Music by Kenyon Hopkins
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
More praise heaped onto enduring classic
18 January 2004 | by (Austin, Texas) – See all my reviews

I've seen The Hustler repeated times, thought not as many as some of the other commentators. Recently I saw it for the first time in the theater, at the Alamo Drafthouse in Austin. Watching "The Hustler" in a theater is like listening to Dave Brubeck's "Time Out" album: you start to see and even hear things in black and white. You know the pool tables are green, and the balls are multi-colored, but somehow the black and white perfectly matches the colorless existence of the protagonist and his supporting players. You can smell the cigarettes, taste the booze.

Newman, Gleason, Scott, and Laurie all turn in great performances. But this movie, made after the heyday of the studio players' contract, still bears the hallmark of great movies from that era: strong supporting performances all the way down the line. Vincent Gardenia, for pete's sake, as the unlucky bartender in the first scene! Michael Constantine as Big John. Myron McCormick as Charlie, Eddie's sponsor most of the way through the movie. And Murray Hamilton as the millionaire Southern mark. This movie was made when supporting roles were an end in themselves, by actors who believed every second they were on screen should be of high quality.

The day I wrote this review -- January 18, 2004 -- The Hustler was no. 143 on the Top 250 list. No way are there 142 better movies.


61 of 81 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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