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Midnight Cowboy
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Reviews & Ratings for
Midnight Cowboy More at IMDbPro »

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1 out of 1 people found the following review useful:

The greatness of Midnight Cowboy

10/10
Author: katiehughes from United States
10 May 2013

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Considered to be one of the greatest movies of all time due to how well it's made, and recipient of countless rewards (including making the IMDb Top 250 movie list, John Schlesinger's Midnight Cowboy (1969) is one anyone interested in movies or film should be taking the time to see. Not only is it incredibly well made artistically, but Dustin Hoffman as Ratso and Jon Voight as Joe Buck have better chemistry together than any pair I've seen together on the big screen in a long, long time. Taking place in New York City in the 1960's your eyes will be opened up to people struggling to overcome poverty and lost hope as real people do. It's a moving film that will influence you despite how long ago it was released, the message has not changed. So if you're looking for a good cry, or a really amazing work of art, don't miss Midnight Cowboy.

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1 out of 1 people found the following review useful:

A friendship develops in a lonely city

10/10
Author: Rahwayrunner from United States
13 April 2013

"Midnight Cowboy" was released in 1969 and directed by John Schlesinger. The film stars Jon Voight as Joe Buck and Dustin Hoffman as Ratso Rizzo as an odd pair that develop a friendship. Joe is cowboy who decides to leave the rural Texas life for New York City - his goal is to become a male prostitute. But Joe's initial foray is met with failure. By chance Joe meets Enrico 'Ratso' Rizzo, a streetwise New Yorker. Ratso initially scams Joe out of a few dollars; Ratso earns his livelihood as a con-artist and hustler. Joe becomes disenchanted as he is kicked out of his hotel room, and loses all of his possessions – New York life is not as easy as Joe had expected. Now angry at his situation and being rooked out of money, Joe finds and confronts Ratso in a luncheonette. Ratso begins to feel guilty and invites Joe to stay with him. The two begin to learn of each other's loneliness and find confront in their growing friendship.

Schlesinger does a magnificent job capturing the isolation that can occur with individuals even when living in a major city. Hoffman is well cast as a quintessential New Yorker, hitting the accent dead on, and his line "I walkin' here!" is consider a memorable movie quote. The movie explores homosexuality and promiscuity at the height of the counter cultural generation, and initially was given an 'X' rating by the MPAA due to its social content and commentary.

Running 113 minutes, the film draws the audience in from the start and eventually one empathizes with the characters, hoping they achieve their goal of moving to Miami and living the 'easy life'. "Midnight Cowboy" won the Academy Award for Best Picture, and remains one of my favorite movies of all time.

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1 out of 1 people found the following review useful:

"Im looking for the statue of liberty"

8/10
Author: uziesuzie from United States
13 April 2013

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Im not a big fan of Jon Voight, but his acting in this film was really good. I don't know if Voight currently picks poor character roles or has lost his touch, cause "Anaconda" wasn't cutting it. Dustin Hoffman was Excellent as usual. His nasally voice didn't work for me a first, but i got used to it once i connected it more to his character. It was funny to read that this move was considered X rated at one point in time and then compare that to the excepted violence and nudity in movies today. It was great to see a late 60's movie that dove into realistic aspect of life that where not allowed during the Hays code. There was no tip toeing around touchy issues in this movie.

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1 out of 1 people found the following review useful:

Voight and Hoffman update the Hope & Crosby movies on their "Road to Ruin".

10/10
Author: mark.waltz from New York City
5 November 2012

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

In 1969 Everybody Was Talking' about this X rated movie which won the Oscar for Best Picture. Having risen to stardom with his role in the ground-breaking "The Graduate", Dustin Hoffman followed that up with a character role (a modern day Peter Lorre) opposite Jon Voight being as far a cowboy from John Wayne or Roy Rogers as possible. For Wayne and Rogers, a stud was either something on their boots or a type of horse. But for Voight, it is something else, and he is heading as far away from Texas to be one as he can. So where does he end up? In the Big Apple, where he learns that a midnight cowboy can only work one place-the Port Authority area of Times Square, and it isn't the wealthy society matrons of Park Avenue who are interested in him.

In "Boys in the Band", a New York City hustler is hired by one of the party guests as a present for the birthday boy, wanting to present this lovably dumb working boy to the guest of honor as his "Midnight Cowboy". In "Midnight Cowboy", Hoffman humiliates Voight by revealing to him that the cowboy look only works with "every Jackie on 42nd Street", calling Voight's appearance "strictly for fags". Rizzo isn't being homophobic in this Stonewall era drama; He is just calling it as he sees it. And in spite of everything else, Voight can't help but admire Hoffman for his honesty. An endearing friendship is formulated which is almost a romance in itself.

The fascinating Sylvia Miles is unforgettable as the Park Avenue matron who utilizes Voight's services with hysterical results. For her less than ten minutes on screen, Miles was deservedly nominated for an Oscar. Brenda Vaccaro has a memorable brief role as a guest at a party who sets Voight up for other possible paid flings. But the twist that results from this shows where the priorities really end up falling. And when Hoffman and Voight finally do end up on "the road", this leads to a sad final where even a street creature like Rizzo is revealed to be a human being.

Times Square in this era (and way beyond) was somewhat frightening, and many people despise the way it has been "Disney-fied" since then. With "Hair" on Broadway at the time, "Midnight Cowboy" in the theaters, and the news reports of crime and vice over the airwaves, Manhattan wasn't the family friendly place it is now. Like other legends that have come and gone, it is nice to go back and see the grit that was and regret the middle ground it might have transitioned to.

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1 out of 1 people found the following review useful:

Simply told in the most radical form of art.

9/10
Author: bock_g from Tokyo, Japan
18 September 2012

"Midnight Cowboy" is a simple American film like no other, it's a coming of age story as well as the disillusionment of the reoccurring American Dream. Despite the seemingly generic plot, this is also visual collage of a much more dark and grim New York in the late 1960's filmed from the perspective of an English filmmaker, John Schlesinger. The film's charm comes from the two main characters Joe Buck and "Ratzo" Rizzo (portrayed by Jon Voight and Dustin Hoffman respectively). Joe Buck is a wannabe gigolo from Texas who comes to New York to satisfy rich women for a permanent living. Being the really naive and "square" guy, Joe's attempts fail as he ends up losing all his fortune and hooking up with male customers at 42nd street out of desperation. In the middle of those events, Joe meets Ratzo Rizzo, a third-rate con man with a gimpy leg. Ratzo initially cons Joe but the two eventually strike a close relationship that lasts until the end of the film. These characters are so real and well-portrayed by Voight and Hoffman. Their chemistry and exchange of dialogue is just so fun to watch. I hear people debating over whether the relationship between these two characters are Homosexual, but I really think that's beside the point. Intimate relationships are not necessarily sexual, which is what Schlesinger is trying to point out. The film also makes brilliant use of fast-cutting flashbacks which became somewhat of a trademark in the early era of New- Hollywood. The Warhol-esque party sequence is also one of the few sequences in the film that uses radical visuals of the late 1960's. Aside from the technological trademarks that make this film good, it as also the first and only X-rated film to win the Best Picture Oscar. However, I see the film as something more important which is the motif of an intimate relationship that definitely withstands the test of time.

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1 out of 1 people found the following review useful:

Excellent movie, and pushing the boundaries.

9/10
Author: a-ferrera from United States
13 December 2011

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

This is a great movie, it is extremely raw and disturbing, especially for the time that it was made in. There was no other movie made in this era of film that could compare to the disturbing qualities that are shown in this movie. Jon Voight is so good in his role as a doughy eye handsome airhead who doesn't know much and thinks life as a hustler is an easy one in New York City. It's crazy to see him deal with the harshness of homelessness and poverty on the dirty streets of the city. Then there is Ratso Rizzo, played by Dustin Hoffman who is a scumbag veteran of the harsh streets of New York City and a con artist. His character is so good and believable. It is great to see these two characters interact and both take care of each other throughout the film. I also enjoy that this movie does not end on a happy note like most movies that came out in this era.

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1 out of 1 people found the following review useful:

Midnight Cowboy

9/10
Author: Jackson Booth-Millard from United Kingdom
21 November 2011

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

From Oscar and BAFTA winning, and Golden Globe nominated director John Schlesinger (Marathon Man, Pacific Heights) I was studying this film as one of my Film Studies course works, I think it was part of my Shocking Cinema studies, I didn't realise though that I hadn't seen the entire film, so I got my hands on it and watched it. Basically Joe Buck (BAFTA and Golden Globe (also nominated) winning, and Oscar nominated Jon Voight, Angelina Jolie's father) is the stud from a small town in Texas who quits his job as a dishwasher and heads for New York City, planning to use his "talents" to make a splash with wealthy high society women. He is haunted occasionally by his bad memory flashbacks involving sexual abuse, violence and abandonment, but he portrays a good enthusiasm for life, with a hopeful, joyous, kind and generous spirit, but he is naive to how life in the city works, making him an easy targets for conning. Getting conned by his partners, including New York dame Cass (Oscar nominated Sylvia Miles), he meets streetwise and sick crippled conman Enrico Salvatore 'Ratso' Rizzo (BAFTA winning, and Oscar and Golden Globe nominated Dustin Hoffman), who does originally rip him off, but as they get to know each other they become firm friends and Joe learns the way of the con artist. They live together in Ratso's shabby home, and he take's over the management of the stud's hustling operation, and they set about finding wealthy women to make a small fortune from, for both of them, including stealing male escort appointment details. Joe does manage to get the best of the women, and even some men, he spends time with, including socialite Shirley (Golden Globe nominated Brenda Vaccaro), he realises that Ratso is getting more dreadfully ill as time goes by, and he has to make some big decisions. Making enough money for them he decides that he and his friend should travel by bus to Florida, where they can get regular jobs, but in the end Joe has the tragedy of losing Ratso from his severe illness, he dies on the journey next to him, and Joe keeps his arms around his friend as they travel on. Also starring John McGiver as Mr. O'Daniel, George Eppersen as Ralph, Ruth White as Sally Buck, Jennifer Salt as Annie, Gilman Rankin as Woodsy Niles and T. Tom Marlow as Little Joe. Hoffman is fantastic as the cripple with the knowledge of conning, and Voight is also fantastic as the naive male prostitute who can be slow, both are matched brilliantly as pretty much opposites, and the direction by Schlesinger is well executed. I knew it was the first X (or 18) rated film to win the Oscar for Best Picture, and it is a well deserved award for being a great insight into the darker world of New York City, as the outsider is sucked into this alien world of cruelty and occasionally false opportunity, and it is different approach to the buddy movie, a must see drama. It won the Oscars for Best Picture for Best Writing, Screenplay Based on Material from Another Medium, and it was nominated for Best Film Editing, it won the BAFTAs for Best Film, Best Film Editing and Best Screenplay, and it was nominated for the UN Award, and it was nominated the Golden Globe for Best Motion Picture - Drama and Best Screenplay. "I'm walking here!" was number 27 on 100 Years, 100 Quotes, Nilsson's "Everybody's Talking'" was number 22 on 100 Years, 100 Songs, and the film was number 36 on 100 Years, 100 Movies. Very good!

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1 out of 1 people found the following review useful:

The good, the bad, and the ugly

8/10
Author: Neil Welch from United Kingdom
14 April 2011

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Was there ever a film of two such extremes? John Schlesinger's film tells the story of Joe Buck (John Voight in an impressive debut), a good looking country hick who comes to the big city to make a living (so he thinks) as a gigolo. His experiences are all bad and he ends up living in utter squalor with "Ratso" Rizzo (Dustin Hoffman) a tubercular petty criminal who had initially conned him, but who turns out to be the only person who actually gives him anything (a place to live, and food), meagre though it is. Then, just as Joe makes his first successful assignation (and through that, an inroad into the life he hoped to lead) Ratso's poor health turns worse, and Joe has to choose whether to abandon him or not.

This is not a cheerful film. The characters are mostly unpleasant (although, to be fair), both Joe and Ratso, initially portrayed as seedy, petty and generally fairly worthless, are shown to have qualities which redeem them somewhat. But the events portrayed are relentlessly squalid and depressing. Fair enough, this is a part of the world we live in, no less so now than it was in 1969.

Against this, however, we have Joe Buck's character arc - this is a character who learns something about himself, and who finishes the film a very much better person than he was at the start. And we have Ratso - one of life's casualties, one who will take advantage of someone who appears to be higher up the food chain than himself, but someone who will extend such generosity as is available to him when he sees that the same person is actually less equipped than he is to deal with city life.

All the performances here are excellent, but Voight and Hoffman are both superb. You won't finish watching with a smile on your face (although you may have a tear in your eye), but you will be aware that you have been watching two great performances.

And John Barry's music is quite special, too, with the Florida Fantasy sequence standing out for all sorts of reasons.

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1 out of 1 people found the following review useful:

A brutal depiction of broken dreams and lives asunder in the fetid backwash of the swinging Sixties.

10/10
Author: G K from Mars
8 July 2010

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

A dim-witted Texan (Jon Voight) comes to New York to offer his services as a stud for rich women, but to his distaste is forced by economic hardship to service gay men too. He falls in with a tubercular con artist (Dustin Hoffman), and they form an unlikely friendship.

Midnight Cowboy is an unblinking gaze at Manhattan's seedy side, where harshness can co-exist with surprising tenderness. At the time, the film looked like a stern response to the consequence-free ethos of drop-out culture. Hoffman and Voight, two very different actors playing contrasting characters, constitute a dream team; by its end, this harrowing account feels more like a rites-of-passage story. The film won three Academy Awards: Best Picture, Best Director and Best Adapted Screenplay.

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1 out of 1 people found the following review useful:

Another great classic

9/10
Author: Dikthompson-767-997054 from United States
16 June 2010

I've seen this movie many times over the years. It is produced and directed superbly, the story is wonderful. A fun fast paced movie with a heart felt climax. NYC is a character in this film, which is always fun in the 60s and 70s movies. Again another very real film, gritty and true to the times. Hoffman and Voight draw the viewer into an intense NYC atmosphere of the 60s. It's no wonder this film won many awards. Only the best in the field could put together a masterpiece like this beauty. The soundtrack isn't the best of the classic movies but it is OK some songs are fantastic and really fit the movie perfectly. Again, I think the kids probably wouldn't give this movie great ratings, they can't relate to that fantastic time period that the movie portrays so well.

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