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The Plot Against Harry (1989)

 -  Comedy  -  16 May 1990 (France)
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Ratings: 7.0/10 from 223 users  
Reviews: 6 user | 10 critic

A small-time Jewish racketeer, just out of prison, finds himself in a quandary. Returning to his old neighborhood, he finds that the streets that he and his friends once controlled have now... See full summary »



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Title: The Plot Against Harry (1989)

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Credited cast:
Martin Priest ...
Harry Plotnick
Ben Lang ...
Maxine Woods ...
Henry Nemo ...
Jacques Taylor ...
Jean Leslie ...
Ellen Herbert ...
Sandra Kazan ...
Ronald Coralian ...
Mel Skolnik
Max Ulman ...
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Louis Basile ...
Margo Ann Berdeshevsky ...
Millie (as Margo Solin)
Ethel Burke ...
Stephen Cheng ...
Jimmy Hong
Sarah Christie ...


A small-time Jewish racketeer, just out of prison, finds himself in a quandary. Returning to his old neighborhood, he finds that the streets that he and his friends once controlled have now been taken over by blacks and Hispanics. On top of that, he must try to get back with his family, who want nothing to do with him. Written by

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Release Date:

16 May 1990 (France)  »

Also Known As:

The Plot Against Harry  »

Box Office


$274,182 (USA)

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Did You Know?


The film was shot in black and white in the late 1960s and was not given a proper release. Almost exactly twenty years later, in 1989, it was discovered and given a proper release for the first time. See more »


Referenced in The Killing Floor (2007) See more »

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User Reviews

A Winner about A Loser
13 January 2003 | by (USA) – See all my reviews

Here's something new: a little B/W film with no stars, about a middle-aged Jewish ex-gangster who wants to go into the catering business --AND it's not "Hollywood sit-com cute"! It's understandable that with all of that going 'against' it, no one wanted to release this film back in 1970. Luckily, director Martin Roemer never underestimated the richness of his film. Twenty years after being turned down by Hollywood, he decided to try the independent festival circuit and there, he found his audience.

The plot against Harry Plotnick is basically his own conscience and paranoia working against him. He'd left a good marriage unaware that his wife was pregnant at the time, not that it probably would have made a big difference to him back then. He was obsessed with the numbers racket, where he made a fair amount of money but ultimately spent a fair amount of time in prison, only to discover upon his release that the rackets had been taken over by various minorities. Now Harry is beginning to see the signs that it's time to make good with his conscience, with his family and with God. Not an easy feat!

This film is a wonderful glimpse into the kind of independent cinema that was around during the early seventies. It's 'early John Cassavetes meets early Woody Allen'. Unlike THE FRENCH CONNECTION or MEAN STREETS, both good films that depicted very specific worlds within Manhattan at that time, this film opens up a whole variety of worlds. Thus it steers free of cliches, no matter how deep it goes into the ethnic backgrounds of its characters. People are just people. Not all good or all bad. This film is like a breath of fresh air compared to the ultra-hip indie films of today. It's effortless, humorous, poignant, and an extremely enjoyable time capsule of the recent past.

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