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Scarecrow (1973)

R | | Drama | 11 April 1973 (USA)
Max, an ex-con drifter with a penchant for brawling is amused by Lion, a homeless ex-sailor, and they partner up as they head east together.

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
Max
...
...
Coley
...
Frenchy
...
Riley
...
Darlene
...
Annie
Richard Hackman ...
Mickey
Al Cingolani ...
Skipper
...
Woman in camper
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Storyline

Max is an ex-con who's been saving money to open a car wash in Pittsburgh. Lionel is a sailor who's returning home to the midwest to see the child born while he was at sea. They form an unlikely pair as the brawling Max learns a little how Lionel copes with the world: Lionel believes that the scarecrow doesn't scare birds, but instead amuses them - birds find scare-crows funny. Written by Gary Dickerson <slug@mail.utexas.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

John D. Rockefeller. J.P. Morgan. Andrew Carnegie. Max and Lion. See more »

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

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Language:

Release Date:

11 April 1973 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Espantapájaros  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The film was entered and selected to screen in competition at the Cannes Film Festival in 1973 where the picture won in a tie the prestigious Palme d'Or (The Golden Palm) award shared with Alan Bridges' The Hireling (1973). See more »

Quotes

Lion: Hey Max, what do you do when it's cold?
Max Millan: I put on more clothes. I'm a cold-blooded bastard, I never get warm enough. I take a little nap after every fight.
Lion: What's with the shoe?
Max Millan: What's with mindin' your own business?
Lion: Boy, some partner I picked.
Max Millan: You didn't pick me, I picked you.
Lion: Why?
Max Millan: 'Cause you gave me your last match. You made me laugh. God damn crows are laughin'...
See more »

Connections

Featured in Les petits mouchoirs (2010) See more »

Soundtracks

Silver Moon
Written by Michael Nesmith (uncredited)
Performed by Michael Nesmith & the First National Band
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User Reviews

Superior Road Movie
6 May 2002 | by (England) – See all my reviews

This is a forgotten classic from the 1970s and a film which few will find on the list of great films made by Al Pacino and Gene Hackman, although it is close to both actors' best work. As with most road films there is very little plot but what plot there is concerns two drifters (Pacino and Hackman), who meet while trying to hitchhike and, after quickly bonding, decide to become partners in a car wash.

They are both very different characters with Hackman dominating as Max, an irritable tough guy, and Pacino, for once underplaying, in the lesser role of Lionel. Although Hackman can play hard-nut characters in his sleep, the role of Max offers him more range than he often gets. This comes mainly through the quirky aspects of his character, such as his obsession with having to wear several layers of clothing, and also in the more tender and comical scenes.

Despite a running time of nearly two hours the film never drags, unlike many road movies, and this is largely due to the performances, especially that of Hackman. There is also another excellent sinister turn from Richard Lynch, a token 1970s villain, who befriends Lionel (Pacino) after he and Max (Hackman) have been sent to prison.

If there is one aspect which lets the film down it's the ending. "Scarecrow" is one of those films in which very little happens and thus it is tagged with an unnecessarily dramatic ending, which is pure Hollywood schmaltz. It would have benefited far more if the film-makers had simply ended the film where it began, rather than struggling with the choice of an overly happy or sad conclusion (I won't tell you which).


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