Ted Kramer's wife leaves him, allowing for a lost bond to be rediscovered between Ted and his son, Billy. But a heated custody battle ensues over the divorced couple's son, deepening the wounds left by the separation.
Texas greenhorn Joe Buck arrives in New York City for the first time. Preening himself as a real "hustler", he finds that he is the one getting "hustled" until he teams up with down-and-out but resilient outcast Ratso Rizzo. The initial "country cousin meets city cousin" relationship deepens. In their efforts to bilk a hostile world rebuffing them at every turn, this unlikely pair progress from partners in shady business to comrades. Each has found his first real friend.Written by
The film was rated "X" (no one under 17 admitted) upon its original release in 1969, but the unrestricted use of that rating by pornographic filmmakers caused the rating to quickly become associated with hardcore sex films. Because of the stigma that developed around the "X" rating in the ratings system's early years, many theaters refused to run X-rated films, and many newspapers would not run ads for them. The film was given a new R-rating (children under 17 must be accompanied by a parent or legal guardian) rating in 1971, without having anything changed or removed. It remains the only X-rated film to win the Oscar for Best Picture, be shown on network television (although the "R" reclassification had taken place by then), or be screened by a sitting U.S. President, Richard Nixon. See more »
After Joe Buck's encounter with Towny, he and Ratso board the bus to Miami. But the bus then enters the south tube of the Lincoln Tunnel, which only carries eastbound traffic into New York. See more »
Whoopee-tee-yi-yo. Get along little dogies. It's your misfortune and none of my own.
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ABC edited 25 minutes from this film for its 1974 network television premiere. See more »
Two desperate characters meet. It's not a meet cute in the classic sense of the word but it's not far away from it either. It's also a melodrama, operatic but hidden in a reality that can't possibly be real. Dustin Hoffman is as bold as Bette Davis in a Warner Brothers melodrama. Amazing. And Jon Voight? - He wasn't the first choice, Michael Sarrazin was. Jon Voight plays his whore with a heart of gold with the decency of a Mary Astor in another melodrama from the the 40's. I've seen Midnight Cowboy 5 times, the first time in a theater, three other times in VHS or DVD - Last night I saw it in a huge screen in the house of a friend. HD I believe and, Oh my God. I wept. I was taken over completely by this two devastating, truly devastating characters. John Schlesiger the director, a genius. British by birth but he showed us an America that most people didn't know existed, not even Americans. This is a film for the ages.
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