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Atlantic City (1980)

R  |   |  Crime, Drama, Romance  |  3 April 1981 (USA)
7.4
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Ratings: 7.4/10 from 10,409 users  
Reviews: 54 user | 43 critic

In a corrupt city, a small-time gangster and the estranged wife of a pot dealer finds themselves thrown together in an escapade of love, money, drugs, and danger.

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Title: Atlantic City (1980)

Atlantic City (1980) on IMDb 7.4/10

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Nominated for 5 Oscars. Another 27 wins & 14 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Lou
...
Sally
...
Grace
...
Joseph
Hollis McLaren ...
Chrissie
...
Dave
Al Waxman ...
Alfie
...
Singer
Moses Znaimer ...
Felix
...
Vinnie
Sean Sullivan ...
Buddy
...
Waiter (as Wally Shawn)
...
Bus Driver
Norma Dell'Agnese ...
Jeanne
Louis Del Grande ...
Mr. Shapiro
Edit

Storyline

Dreams. Becoming an Atlantic City croupier will help Sally realize her dream of going to Monte Carlo, a symbol of the glamorous life that has been evading her since escaping from Saskatchewan a decade ago. Lou dreams that he was a great mobster in the old days. Grace came to Atlantic City for a Betty Grable look-alike contest and stayed to become the wife of a mobster. A brief visit to Atlantic City by Sally's estranged husband will change the course of the lives of Sally and Lou. Written by Dale O'Connor <daleoc@interaccess.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

She made him become what he always wanted to be - a lover, a hero, a rich man...and a killer! See more »

Genres:

Crime | Drama | Romance

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Official Sites:

Country:

|

Language:

|

Release Date:

3 April 1981 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Atlantic City  »

Box Office

Budget:

$7,200,000 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The stunning footage of the Traymore Hotel being demolished on the Atlantic City Boardwalk seen at the start of the film was actually about eight years old as the building was knocked-down in 1972. Most of Atlantic City's old resorts, hotels and entertainment piers were still standing when this film was made and can be seen in the picture. Many of them however were run-down and in disrepair. Within a couple of years of this film being made and released, many of them were demolished to make way for new casinos. The earlier movie The King of Marvin Gardens (1972) was also shot in Atlantic City and similarly showed the city prior to the place's massive casino re-development. When Atlantic City (1980) was shot, there were only two operating casinos in Atlantic City, Caesars and Resorts, with Bally's Park Place only opening just at the end of principal photography. See more »

Goofs

At one point Sally (Susan Sarandon) asks a florist to send flowers to her dead husbands family in Moose jaw, Saskatchewan. Sally mentions that it is "near Medicine Hat". Medicine Hat, Alberta is in fact nowhere near Moose Jaw, which is over 250 miles away. See more »

Quotes

Lou: A room. For me and my mother.
See more »

Crazy Credits

As the end credits roll, an old building on the boardwalk is demolished to some of the tunes that appear earlier in the film. Each time the wrecking ball hits, we hear a cymbal crash and the soundtrack jumps to a different song. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Film Geek (2005) See more »

Soundtracks

Atlantic City, My Old Friend
Music and Lyrics by Paul Anka
Special Guest Star: Robert Goulet
See more »

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User Reviews

Screenwriter John Guare and director Louis Malle give tribute to people in transition, set to the back drop of a city in transition.
19 January 1999 | by (Washington, DC) – See all my reviews

Set in 1970s Atlantic City in the early days of legalized gambling, we find a young woman (Susan Sarandon) working in the fish section of a casino restaurant while learning to be a card dealer. At the same time, an elderly, small-time hood (Burt Lancaster) is stuck taking care of a gangster's widow (Kate Reid). Sarandon's husband and her younger sister ran off together and unexpectedly reappear looking for a place to stay. Her sister is now pregnant and her low-life husband is trying to sell drugs stolen from a big-time dealer in Philadelphia. Sarandon's husband meets Lancaster in a bar while trying to set up a deal to sell the drugs, and he convinces Lancaster to be his "mule." Lancaster and Sarandon being neighbors -- with her brother in law as the mutual acquaintance -- are brought together and become involved in more trouble than they ever thought imaginable.

The refreshing aspect of this motion picture is that it avoids the typical Hollywood pitfall where character development and dialogue play second fiddle to car chases and stunt scenes. In Atlantic City the odious characters and sticky situations are secondary to the development/relationships of the lead characters. This is the first excellent performance on film of a young Sarandon, and one of the finest performances of Lancaster's distinguished career.

This film has been butchered on cable, VHS, and laserdisc. Please let's have a quality remaster on DVD in widescreen format.


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

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