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A police detective goes undercover in the underground S&M gay subculture of New York City to catch a serial killer who is preying on gay men.

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5 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
Capt. Edelson
...
Nancy
...
Stuart Richards
...
Ted Bailey
...
Patrolman DiSimone
...
Skip Lee
...
Det. Lefransky
...
Dr. Rifkin
...
DaVinci
Arnaldo Santana ...
Loren Lukas
Larry Atlas ...
Eric Rossman
...
Chief of Detectives
Sonny Grosso ...
Det. Blasio
...
Det. Schreiber (as Edward O'Neil)
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Storyline

A serial killer brutally slays and dismembers several gay men in New York's S&M and leather districts. The young police officer Steve Burns is sent undercover onto the streets as decoy for the murderer. Working almost completely isolated from his department, he has to learn and practice the complex rules and signals of this little society. While barely seeing his girlfriend Nancy anymore, the work starts changing him. Written by Tom Zoerner <Tom.Zoerner@informatik.uni-erlangen.de>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Al Pacino is Cruising for a killer.


Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Details

Country:

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Release Date:

15 February 1980 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

William Friedkin's Cruising  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Angered over reports of the film's negative portrayal of gay life that leaked out during shooting, activists distributed hundreds of whistles to members of New York City's gay community and encouraged them to spoil exterior filming on city streets by blowing them loudly whenever they spotted a crew from the film shooting on location, a tactic that cost the studio a considerable amount of money that had to be spent on lost production time and post-dubbing. See more »

Goofs

Just before the first murder happens you can see the blood tube for a few moments as the first stabs are going into his back. See more »

Quotes

Steve Burns: Hips or lips?
See more »

Crazy Credits

The film only opens with the title in large letters, across the screen. It is only at the end where the filmmakers are credited. See more »

Connections

Referenced in The Cinema Snob: Can't Stop the Music (2014) See more »

Soundtracks

Waterwheel
(uncredited)
Performed by Ralph Towner
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
One of the Most Ambiguous Conclusions of an American Movie
19 October 2012 | by (Rio de Janeiro, Brazil) – See all my reviews

In New York, the ambitious police officer Steve Burns (Al Pacino) is assigned by his Captain Edelson (Paul Sorvino) to work uncover in the gay S&M underworld to seek out the serial-killer that is killing and severing the members of gays since he has the same appearance of the victims. Steve has the objective to be promoted to detective and get his golden shield and Capt. Edelson is the only one in the department who knows Steve's assignment.

Steve does not tell to his girlfriend Nancy (Karen Allen) his mission and he needs to learn the behavior of this community. During the investigation, Steve is affected by the discoveries in this new world, but Captain Edelson does not want him to quit his assignment.

In the 70's and 80's, Al Pacino was among my favorite American actors with his magnificent performances. "Cruising" is an original movie that discloses part of the society unknown to straight persons like me: the gay S&M world of New York in the late 70's.

I have seen this film at least four time and today for the first time on DVD, and my greatest question is how far a person would go to be promoted. Steve Burns dreams on having a golden shield and when he has his chance, he accepts a dangerous psychological mission to find the serial-killer that is killing gays and affects his personal life and his relationship with his girlfriend. The conclusion is one of the most ambiguous that I have ever seen in an American movie, when Steve looks at his image on the mirror. My vote is eight.

Title (Brazil): "Parceiros da Noite" ("Night Partners")


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