When his apartment building is torn down, a retired lifelong New Yorker goes on a cross country odyssey with his beloved cat Tonto.



On Disc

at Amazon

Won 1 Oscar. Another 3 wins & 3 nominations. See more awards »
Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Blume in Love (1973)
Comedy | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

Lawyer Stephen Blume, specialized in divorces, lives a paradoxical situation when, having his own marriage break up, is still in love with his ex-wife.

Director: Paul Mazursky
Stars: George Segal, Susan Anspach, Kris Kristofferson
Comedy | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

A wealthy woman from Manhattan's Upper East Side struggles to deal with her new identity and her sexuality after her husband of 16 years leaves her for a younger woman.

Director: Paul Mazursky
Stars: Jill Clayburgh, Alan Bates, Michael Murphy
The Late Show (1977)
Comedy | Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

A grumpy semi-retired private investigator partners with a quirky female client to catch the people who murdered his partner.

Director: Robert Benton
Stars: Art Carney, Lily Tomlin, Bill Macy
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

The portrayal of pretentiously bohemian youth.

Director: Paul Mazursky
Stars: Lenny Baker, Shelley Winters, Ellen Greene
Comedy | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

Documentary film-maker Bob Sanders and his wife Carol attend a group therapy session that serves as the backdrop for the opening scenes of the film. Returning to their Los Angeles home, the... See full summary »

Director: Paul Mazursky
Stars: Natalie Wood, Robert Culp, Elliott Gould
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

Three friends who are living on the dole decide to organize a bank robbery.

Director: Martin Brest
Stars: George Burns, Art Carney, Lee Strasberg
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

A first-year law student at Harvard Law School struggles with balancing his coursework and his relationship with the daughter of his sternest professor.

Director: James Bridges
Stars: Timothy Bottoms, Lindsay Wagner, John Houseman
Drama | Music
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

A broken-down, middle-aged country singer gets a new wife, reaches out to his long-lost daughter, and tries to put his troubled life back together.

Director: Bruce Beresford
Stars: Robert Duvall, Tess Harper, Betty Buckley
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

A disillusioned aging decent man and once proud WWII veteran is dealing with midlife crisis as well as a tough moral dilemma. If he wants his small near-bankrupt clothing company to survive, he has two days to let go of his shaken morals.

Director: John G. Avildsen
Stars: Jack Lemmon, Jack Gilford, Laurie Heineman
Certificate: Passed Romance | Western
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.8/10 X  

A charming, happy-go-lucky bandit in old Arizona plays cat-and-mouse with the sheriff trying to catch him while he romances a local beauty.

Director: Irving Cummings
Stars: Warner Baxter, Edmund Lowe, Dorothy Burgess
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.2/10 X  

Bohemian Alex Morrison has just finished directing his first feature length movie. In its previews, the movie is considered a critical, artistic and surefire commercial success. As such, ... See full summary »

Director: Paul Mazursky
Stars: Donald Sutherland, Ellen Burstyn, Meg Mazursky
Julia (1977)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

At the behest of an old and dear friend, playwright Lillian Hellman undertakes a dangerous mission to smuggle funds into Nazi Germany.

Director: Fred Zinnemann
Stars: Jane Fonda, Vanessa Redgrave, Jason Robards


Cast overview, first billed only:
Grocery Clerk
Herbert Berghof ...
Avon Long ...
Rashel Novikoff ...
Mrs. Rothman
Burt (as Phil Bruns)
Burt Jr.
Norman (as Joshua Mostel)
Dolly Jonah ...
Sybil Bowan ...
Old Landlady
Joe Madden ...
Bette Howard ...
Morgue Clerk
Patricia Fay ...
Airport Security Woman
Muriel Beerman ...
Taxi Driver


Harry is a retired teacher in his 70s living in the Upper West Side of New York City where his late wife and he raised his children--where he's lived all his life. When the building he lives in is torn down to make way for a parking garage, Harry and his beloved cat Tonto begin a journey across the United States, visiting his children, seeing a world he never seemed to have the time to see before, making new friends, and saying goodbye to old friends. Written by Gary Dickerson <slug@mail.utexas.edu>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Get a Lift


R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

15 January 1975 (France)  »

Also Known As:

Harry & Tonto  »

Box Office


$980,000 (estimated)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

(Westrex Recording System)


Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Dolly Jonah, who portrayed Elaine Coombs, in her only film role, had an extensive career in theater, as both a writer and actor. See more »


When Harry is briefly jailed, he is allowed to keep his suitcase and other personal belongings in his cell. None of these things would ever be allowed in a holding tank. See more »


Elaine Coombes: I was gonna' try and cook some authentic soul food, but then I got afraid it wouldn't turn out all right. But I love the soul food. Burt and I ate it at a little place in the East Village that specializes in it... It's run by an elderly Afro-American woman.
Leroy: *I* didn't know they had soul food in Africa.
See more »

Crazy Credits

Tonto is billed "and TONTO" See more »


Referenced in Yes Man (2008) See more »


Where the Blue of the Night (Meets the Gold of the Day)
Music by Fred E. Ahlert
Lyrics by Roy Turk
Sung by Art Carney
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

one of the best Hollywood films of the 70's
4 December 2005 | by (pacific northwest) – See all my reviews

Art Carney was a quiet, quirky genius and this film is a lasting testament to his talent.

It's a story about how an -average- man (actually not average at all, as we come to find out) lives a life of dignity and confronts the chaos of modern existence--including that most devastating of inevitabilities, mortality and, particularly, old age .

Besides Carney, watch for superb ensemble acting from Ellen Burstyn, Larry Hagman, the inimitable Chief Dan George, Arthur Hunnicutt, and a host of great character actors from the 70's.

Unlike so many contemporary scripts from the late 60's and early 70's, the cultural references seem interesting and historical and not dated, probably because--like everything else in this film--they are treated with respect and a sense of mercy.

If this film had been made by a French director in 1974, it would be heralded as a major classic. Oh, well.

Watch it. Savor it. This is really something special.

36 of 36 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
carney better than pacino (godfather II) and nicholson (chinatown)?? GazongaGizmo
More films like this? BERSERKERpoetry
Did he 'get' the girl who picked him up? marche1choripan
The C word not the B word willardfillmore
nudity cappiello
Ginger: Melanie Mayron's likeable character cryptical70
Discuss Harry and Tonto (1974) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for: