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American Gigolo (1980)

R  |   |  Crime, Drama, Mystery  |  1 February 1980 (USA)
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Ratings: 6.2/10 from 15,093 users  
Reviews: 67 user | 38 critic

A Los Angeles male escort, who mostly caters to an older female clientèle, is accused of a murder which he did not commit.



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Nominated for 2 Golden Globes. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Nina van Pallandt ...
Anne (as Nina Van Pallandt)
Charles Stratton
Lisa Williams
Tom Stewart ...
Mr. Rheiman
Patricia Carr ...
Judy Rheiman (as Patti Carr)
David Cryer ...
Lt. Curtis
Mrs. Dobrun
Mrs. Sloan
Frances Bergen ...
Mrs. Laudner
Macdonald Carey ...
Hollywood Actor (as MacDonald Carey)
William Dozier ...
Michelle's Lawyer


Julian makes a lucrative living as an escort to older women in the Los Angeles area. He begins a relationship with Michelle, a local politician's wife, without expecting any pay. One of his clients is murdered and Detective Sunday begins pumping him for details on his different clients, something he is reluctant to do considering the nature of his work. Julian begins to suspect he's being framed. Meanwhile Michelle begins to fall in love with him. Written by Ed Sutton <>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


He's the highest paid lover in Beverly Hills. He leaves women feeling more alive than they've ever felt before. Except one. See more »


R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





| |

Release Date:

1 February 1980 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

An American Gigolo  »

Box Office


$4,800,000 (estimated)

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Lesley-Anne Down, Jennifer Jason Leigh and Kay Lenz auditioned for the role of Michelle Stratton. See more »


When Julian and Michelle are having a conversation at his apartment, he tells her about the Palm Springs murder he is being framed for. He tells her that it took place a couple of weeks ago. A short time later, she asks him when the murder took place, he tells her it was a week ago Tuesday. This is duplicated later on by Charles (The Senator) when he's talking to Julian, but the Tuesday part is omitted. See more »


Julian Kaye: This is my apartment. Women don't come here.
See more »


Referenced in Charade (1984) See more »


Take Off Your Uniform
Written and Performed by John Hiatt
Courtesy of MCA, Inc. Records
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

21 July 2003 | by (Belgrade, Serbia) – See all my reviews

American Gigolo is surely one of the most underrated movies of all times. It's a very good movie, in my opinion second best of Paul Schrader's films, right after "Mishima - Life in four chapters", and I never understood why it got all the bad reviews. First of all it's one of the most stylish films I've ever seen, with fascinating scenes from start to finish, vibrant colors and beautiful sets and exterior shots. Paul Schrader, apart from being a great scriptwriter is also the master of photography, maybe the best in modern Hollywood. American Gigolo is a phenomenal character study too, struggle of a lonely man against the society he doesn't belong to, and in which he was artificially implanted by becoming something he's not. Michelle (Lauren Hutton) succeeds in bringing out the true Julian Kay, and their relationship on screen is very close and direct, although it maybe doesn't seem so, probably because both of the actors appear cold and distant, but that's just the result of the world they're living in. Both their lives are fake, and the only time they are real is with one another. The love scene between Julian and Michelle is one of the best in history of the cinema, it tells so much without showing much. Paul Schrader is one of my favorite directors, but that's only a small fraction of why I'm giving this movie

10 out of 10

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

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