6.9/10
4,848
54 user 33 critic

Last Exit to Brooklyn (1989)

R | | Drama | 4 May 1990 (USA)
Set in Brooklyn during the 1950s against a backdrop of union corruption and violence. A prostitute falls in love with one of her customers. Also a disturbed man discovers that he is homosexual.

Director:

Writers:

(book), (screenplay)
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6 wins. See more awards »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Vinnie
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Boyce
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Sal
Jason Andrews ...
Tony
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Freddy
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Al
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Mary Black
Camille Saviola ...
Ella
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Donna
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Spook
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Tommy
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Paulie
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Storyline

Taken from Hubert Selby, Jr.'s controversial novel. A gallery of characters in Brooklyn in the 1950s are crushed by their surroundings and selves: a union strike leader discovers he is gay; a prostitute falls in love with one of her clients; a family cannot cope with the fact that their daughter is illegitimately pregnant. Written by Serdar Yegulalp <syegul@ix.netcom.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The Novel That Shocked The World Is Now A Movie.

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

| |

Language:

Release Date:

4 May 1990 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

A Última Saída para Brooklyn  »

Filming Locations:

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Box Office

Opening Weekend:

$186,489 (USA) (6 May 1990)

Gross:

$1,730,005 (USA)
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Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Patricia Arquette was offered the lead role but turned it down. In a 2015 interview with NPR she said, "It was a star-making part, a great part, and between the time that they offered it to me and they started shooting, I discovered I was pregnant. And that character really goes through a lot of difficult things in that movie, and it was my first time having a baby and I thought, "I don't want to be pregnant and emotionally go through this woman's journey, which is very violent at certain points, with a baby inside me." See more »


Soundtracks

Be Ba-ba Le-ba
Written and Performed by Helen Humes
Courtesy of CEMA Special Markets/EMI Records, Inc.
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User Reviews

 
The Opposite of Pleasantville
25 October 2005 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Did you ever notice that if you were to show a film to after dinner friends, all too often what you bring out is a work that might not make a list of your personal top ten favorite movies? This is one of those films. Very postwar early 50's, but a 1950's Donna Reed would have been lost in. It truly is the opposite of Pleasantville.

Hubert Selby's dark vision of the common man is woven around several characters in a Brooklyn neighborhood. A factory worker called Big Joe is played by Burt Young. Instinctively brutal yet pathetically naive, he wanders through his Brooklyn neighborhood functioning at the most elemental level reinforced only by an inherited value system to which he is single-mindedly loyal. Jennifer Jason Leigh plays a whore whose timeline for thoughts of her future stretches out only several hours. She gets by in life rolling drunks whose tolerance for liquor is less than hers, or giving sex to those who outlast her. A soldier soon to be shipped out takes her to Manhattan for his last few stateside days and falls in love with her. Tralala (Leigh's character) recognizes the attendant lust but has no clue about the implications of his love. As she sees him off, the Lieutenant hands her an envelope. Tra's face lights up as her vision of the order in life (she gives him sex, he has a good time, he gives her money) seems to have been reaffirmed. When the envelope turns out to contain a lengthy love letter she doesn't become angry or disappointed, just confused.

In addition to Leigh and Young, powerful performances are turned in by Jerry Orbach (the corrupt union boss), Stephen Lang (the closet homosexual strike-line foreman), Stephen Baldwin (a street punk), Ricki Lake (Big Joe's very pregnant daughter), and Alexis Arquette (the teen-age transvestite).

The soundtrack is excellent and unobtrusive and Uli Edel's direction insightful. You need a strong stomach to watch it and quite a bit of dedication to find it, but it's well worth the effort.


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