7.5/10
71,100
251 user 105 critic

American Graffiti (1973)

PG | | Comedy, Drama | 11 August 1973 (USA)
A couple of high school grads spend one final night cruising the strip with their buddies before they go off to college.

Director:

Reviews
Popularity
1,557 ( 194)

Watch Now

From $2.99 (SD) on Prime Video

ON DISC
Nominated for 5 Oscars. Another 9 wins & 8 nominations. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
... Curt
... Steve (as Ronny Howard)
... John
... Terry (as Charlie Martin Smith)
... Laurie
... Debbie
... Carol
... Disc Jockey
... Joe
... Carlos
Beau Gentry ... Ants
... Bob Falfa
Jim Bohan ... Holstein
... Budda
Deby Celiz ... Wendy
Edit

Storyline

It's the proverbial end of the summer 1962 in a small southern California town. It's the evening before best friends and recent high school graduates, Curt Henderson and Steve Bolander, are scheduled to leave town to head to college back east. Curt, who received a lucrative local scholarship, is seen as the promise that their class holds. But Curt is having second thoughts about leaving what Steve basically sees as their dead end town. Curt's beliefs are strengthened when he spots an unknown beautiful blonde in a T-bird who mouths the words "I love you" to him. As Curt tries to find that blonde while trying to get away from a local gang who have him somewhat hostage, Curt may come to a decision about his immediate future. Outgoing class president Steve, on the other hand, wants to leave, despite meaning that he will leave girlfriend, head cheerleader and Curt's sister, Laurie Henderson, behind. Steve and Laurie spend the evening "negotiating" the state of their relationship. Meanwhile... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

...is back! [1978 Re-release] See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Drama

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

11 August 1973 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Another Slow Night in Modesto  »

Edit

Box Office

Budget:

$777,000 (estimated)

Gross USA:

$115,000,000

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$140,000,000
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (re-release) (1978) | (rough cut)

Sound Mix:

(Dolby System®)

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

George Lucas was inspired by I Vitelloni (1953). See more »

Goofs

When Curt is sitting in the back seat of a car with his ex-girlfriend Wendy and her friend sitting in the front, right before the cut to Wendy saying "hey did you know that my ex...", you can see her in the far left of the shot and her mouth isn't moving for the first few words of her line. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Terry Fields: Hey, what do you say, Curt? Last night in town... you guys gonna have a little bash before you leave?
Steve Bolander: The Moose have been looking for you all day.
[hands a check to Curt]
Steve Bolander: They got worried... thought you were trying to avoid them or something.
Terry Fields: What is it? What do ya got?
Curt Henderson: Oh, great.
Terry Fields: That's $2,000 man! Two thousand dollars!
Steve Bolander: Mr. Jennings gave it to me to give to you. He says he's sorry it's so late, but it's the first scholarship the Moose Lodge has given out. And he, uh, says they're ...
[...]
See more »

Crazy Credits

At the start of the closing credits, the character and actor names for the main characters randomly appear in time to the opening xylophone notes of the Beach Boys' All Summer Long, which continues to play over the credits. See more »

Connections

Featured in Troldspejlet: Episode #25.4 (2001) See more »

Soundtracks

She's So Fine
Written by Kris Moe and Linn Phillips III (incredited)
Flash Cadillac (as Flash Cadillac and The Continental Kids)
Produced by Kim Fowley
Courtesy of Roulette Records:
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
Seems almost an accidental classic
7 October 2001 | by See all my reviews

I don't know if George Lucas really knew what he had in this picture--surely the screenplay seemed funny enough, and the thought of the cars and the period music was enticing--but did he really know these "unknown" actors would bring these characters to life? It seems almost a fluke, shot in 29 days and on a tight budget, but "American Graffiti" is a classic. It is perhaps pure nostalgia, mixing pathos and humor, sadness and craziness, hope and reflection in quiet little bursts of excitement. After cruising with Milner all night, teenage Carol hates to say goodbye but does, waving from her porch with the light on; Toad survives one bad accident after another, but his real moment is in hearing praise from his date (fantastic, husky-voiced Candy Clark, dolled up like a speeding Sandra Dee) just before she says good night; after chasing his dream date all night, Kurt (Richard Dreyfuss, green and anxious, and appealingly bemused) finally gets to talk to the stunning blonde wonder on the telephone, where she whispers a wrenching goodbye. The whole movie is steeped in reflection. It has great, great humor, yet it leaves one with a bittersweet melancholia. For yesterday is in the past, with our music, our memories and our hesitant farewells. ***1/2 from ****


140 of 164 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 251 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page

Stream Trending TV Series With Prime Video

Explore popular and recently added TV series available to stream now with Prime Video.

Start your free trial