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The Day of the Locust (1975)

An art director in the 1930s falls in love and attempts to make a young woman an actress despite Hollywood who wants nothing to do with her because of her problems with an estranged man and her alcoholic father.



(novel), (screenplay)

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Nominated for 2 Oscars. Another 2 wins & 4 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Big Sister
Claude Estee
Earle Shoop
Lelia Goldoni ...
Mary Dove
Abe Kusich
Adore (as Jackie Haley)
Gloria LeRoy ...
Mrs. Loomis (as Gloria Le Roy)
Jane Hoffman ...
Mrs. Odlesh
Mr. Odlesh (as Norm Leavitt)
Mrs. Johnson


Life's flotsam and jetsam turn up at late 1930's Hollywoodland's door, once more, in this insightful tale of wannabes and desperadoes. Tod Hackett, artist, has inspirations to become noticed until he meets Faye Greener, blonde bombshell, and is immediately smitten. She has other ideas. She has Homer Simpson, victim, in her sights and cruelty and loneliness takes new meaning as all three are slowly sucked into the Hollywood system of sycophants, diggers and parasites, sucking the life from others as the life, and soul, is slowly sucked from them. Written by Cinema_Fan

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Hollywood in the Golden Age See more »


Drama | Thriller


R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

8 August 1975 (Ireland)  »

Also Known As:

Como plaga de langosta  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?


Penultimate produced screenplay of veteran Hollywood screenwriter Waldo Salt whose final work was Coming Home (1978). See more »


The film opens at a sightseeing/tourist spot and parking area at the foot of the "H" in the Hollywoodland sign. No such facility has ever existed as that part of the hill is too steep for road construction. The real road passes behind the sign and above it. See more »


[first lines]
Mrs. Odlesh: It isn't as splashy as some other places, but we pride ourselves on being a little classier.
Tod Hackett: [referring to a large crack in the plaster wall] Hmmm, the crack's real.
Mrs. Odlesh: Oh yes. We call this our earthquake cottage. Mrs. Porter had occupancy then. During the big one in '33. Property damage ran into the millions.
Tod Hackett: Will you fix it if I stayed for a while?
Mrs. Odlesh: Oh no! No! This is our showplace. Mrs. Porter wouldn't let us touch that wall. She worked that sampler herself to cover over the hole. ...
See more »


Referenced in The Simpsons: Penny-Wiseguys (2012) See more »


Music by Ralph Rainger
Lyrics by Leo Robin
See more »

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User Reviews

Masterwork of the Cinema - unduly neglected and underrated
6 August 2001 | by (Miami, FL) – See all my reviews


I've sat here in front of this blank for several minutes now.

I cannot find another word to describe this movie. The building tensions are handled so deftly, the ending, which must rank among the most harrowing scenes in all art, comes both as a surprise and as no surprise.

William Atherton, Karen Black, Donald Sutherland, Burgess Meredith, Richard Dysart - all incomparably perfect in every way in these roles.

Schlesinger is a master, the Barry score is cleverly arranged and the Hall photography and Clark editing, especially in the final sequence is just about the most prodigiously horrendous and horrific in all cinema.

I'm still shaking.

48 of 62 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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