7.4/10
25,536
85 user 37 critic

Drugstore Cowboy (1989)

Trailer
0:31 | Trailer

Watch Now

From $2.99 (SD) on Amazon Video

ON DISC
A pharmacy-robbing dope fiend and his crew pop pills and evade the law.

Director:

(as Gus Van Sant Jr.)

Writers:

(novel), (screenplay) (as Gus Van Sant Jr.) | 1 more credit »
11 wins & 7 nominations. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

Two best friends living on the streets of Portland as hustlers embark on a journey of self discovery and find their relationship stumbling along the way.

Director: Gus Van Sant
Stars: River Phoenix, Keanu Reeves, James Russo
Mala Noche (1986)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

A story of amour fou. Walt is madly in love/lust with a young illegal Mexican immigrant. However, the object of his unrequited affection doesn't even speak any English and finds Walt really... See full summary »

Director: Gus Van Sant
Stars: Tim Streeter, Doug Cooeyate, Ray Monge
To Die For (1995)
Comedy | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

Suzanne Stone is an aspiring TV personality who will do anything to be in the spotlight, including enlisting three teenagers to kill her husband.

Director: Gus Van Sant
Stars: Nicole Kidman, Matt Dillon, Joaquin Phoenix
Elephant (2003)
Crime | Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

Several ordinary high school students go through their daily routine as two others prepare for something more malevolent.

Director: Gus Van Sant
Stars: Elias McConnell, Alex Frost, Eric Deulen
Last Days (2005)
Biography | Drama | Music
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.8/10 X  

A Seattle musician's life and career are reminiscent to those of Kurt Cobain.

Director: Gus Van Sant
Stars: Michael Pitt, Lukas Haas, Asia Argento
Paranoid Park (2007)
Crime | Drama | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

A teenage skateboarder's life begins to fray after he is involved in the accidental death of a security guard.

Director: Gus Van Sant
Stars: Gabe Nevins, Daniel Liu, Taylor Momsen
Spun (2002)
Comedy | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

A drug dealer introduces one of his customers, a 'speed freak', to the man who runs the meth lab. A crazy three-day adventure ensues.

Director: Jonas Åkerlund
Stars: Jason Schwartzman, John Leguizamo, Patrick Fugit
Gerry (2002)
Adventure | Drama | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  

A friendship between two young men is tested when they go for a hike in a desert and forget to bring any water or food with them.

Director: Gus Van Sant
Stars: Casey Affleck, Matt Damon
Kids (1995)
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

A day in the life of a group of teens as they travel around New York City skating, drinking, smoking, and deflowering virgins.

Director: Larry Clark
Stars: Leo Fitzpatrick, Justin Pierce, Chloë Sevigny
Comedy | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.3/10 X  

Sissy Hankshaw is born with enormous thumbs that help her hitchhiking through the US from a young age. She becomes a model in advertising and her NY agent 'the Countess' sends her to his ... See full summary »

Director: Gus Van Sant
Stars: Uma Thurman, Lorraine Bracco, Pat Morita
Rumble Fish (1983)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

Rusty James, an absent-minded street thug struggles to live up to his legendary older brother's reputation, and longs for the days when gang warfare was going on.

Director: Francis Ford Coppola
Stars: Matt Dillon, Mickey Rourke, Diane Lane
Crime | Drama | Music
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

The eldest son of a fugitive family comes of age and wants to live a life of his own.

Director: Sidney Lumet
Stars: River Phoenix, Christine Lahti, Judd Hirsch
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Bob
...
...
...
Eric Hull ...
Druggist
...
David
...
John Kelly ...
Cop
...
Bob's Mother
George Catalano ...
Trousinski
Janet Baumhover ...
Neighbor Lady
Ted D'Arms ...
Neighbor Man
Neal Thomas ...
Halamer
Stephen Rutledge ...
Motel Manager
...
Drug Counselor
Edit

Storyline

A group of drug users in the 1970's help finance their habit by robbing drug stores. Matt Dillon's character is very superstitious and eventually his luck runs out. Written by Jason Ihle <jrihl@conncoll.edu>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Genres:

Crime | Drama

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

20 October 1989 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

A gyógyszertári cowboy  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Budget:

$2,500,000 (estimated)

Gross:

$4,729,352 (USA)
 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

Drugstore Cowboy (1989) was #3 on Gene Siskel 's list of the "Best Films of 1989." See more »

Goofs

When Bob first meets with Father Tom and they're talking while seated, at the end of the conversation, Father Tom is leaning either forwards or resting at the chair's back between shots. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Bob: I was once a shameless full-time dope fiend.
See more »

Crazy Credits

Home-video-style footage of the characters plays during almost the entire end credits. See more »

Connections

Referenced in From Dusk Till Dawn: The Series: Santa Sangre (2015) See more »

Soundtracks

I Am
Music & Lyrics by Roky Erickson
Produced by Craig Luckin & Karl Derfler
Performed by Roky Erickson & Jack Johnson
Courtesy of Restless/Pink Dust Records
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

A poignant but realistic look at the drug subculture
18 May 2002 | by (Flagstaff, AZ) – See all my reviews

If you're one of the so-called `art-film' aficionados who was disappointed, as I was, by Requiem for a Dream (and even if you weren't), you'll love Drugstore Cowboy. Directed by the man who gave us such classics as To Die For and Good Will Hunting, Drugstore Cowboy is, without doubt, Van Sant's greatest work. It's a magnificent time capsule from the early seventies, having no reference to the Vietnam War, Kent State, or any other icon of the period. It's purely about the drug subculture.

Set along the affluent north Atlantic seaboard, where pharmacies and drugstores litter the urban landscape, the drama revolves around four friends who support their drug habits by robbing the official dispensaries of addictive substances. An interesting and compelling setup all by itself, in lesser hands, the script and action would be enough to produce a decent flick; but, it goes way beyond that. Matt Dillon gives what I think is his best performance ever, a perfectly charming substance abuser who has created a little cocoon of a world all to himself. Like little moons revolving around his dreamy and sometimes terrifying little world, the drugstores he stalks all promise a one-way trip to a different place. As viewers, we're all sucked in by the gravity of his world, such that we even begin to understand and believe his peculiar little superstitious rituals. In this special existence, they make sense. To transgress against the rules is to court disaster. And like Adam in the garden, he eventually breaks his own rules, and pays the price.

But it's a fortunate fall from grace. Drugstore Cowboy is completely realistic in its portrayal of the full-blown addict's hitting rock bottom, an experience that is foundational in the wisdom of AA. The recovery scenes are moving in their sincerity and simplicity, none of which is sugarcoated or saccharine. And yet, the recovery scenes are both joyous and heartbreakingly poignant. God, what a great movie.


14 of 23 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
100 Things I Learned From Drugstore Cowboy... NiKoDay
Dianne's I'm not a tramp comment tracy_m_15
Was it really that easy to rob drugstores back in the day? sparrowtrece
Drugstore Cowboy vs. My Own Private Idaho LatteBoy13
Ambiguous ending jay-line
Hat on the bed.. stytown
Discuss Drugstore Cowboy (1989) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?