Based upon a real-life story that happened in the early seventies in which the Chase Manhattan Bank in Gravesend, Brooklyn, was held siege by a bank robber determined to steal enough money for his wife (a trans woman) to undergo a sex change operation. On a hot summer afternoon, the First Savings Bank of Brooklyn is held up by Sonny and Sal, two down-and-out characters. Although the bank manager and female tellers agree not to interfere with the robbery, Sonny finds that there's actually nothing much to steal, as most of the cash has been picked up for the day. Sonny then gets an unexpected phone call from Police Captain Moretti, who tells him the place is surrounded by the city's entire police force. Having few options under the circumstances, Sonny nervously bargains with Moretti, demanding safe escort to the airport and a plane out of the country in return for the bank employees' safety.Written by
John Cazale was cast at Al Pacino's insistence, despite being nowhere the age of the real Sal, who was 18 at the time. Sidney Lumet was opposed to the idea because the actor was clearly inappropriate for the part. However, when Cazale came in to read for the part, Lumet was sold on him within 5 minutes. See more »
After talking to Leon, Sonny hangs the phone up and puts his hand on his head. When seen from the front, his hands are not on his head. See more »
What'd he say?
He was talkin' about arrangements . we were talkin' about the TV.
Why couldn't he talk about that here?
He was showin' me how the airport bus is comin' in, like that, Sal.
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Al Pacino is the only actor credited at the start of the film. The rest of the cast is not credited until the ending. See more »
Recent DVD release replaces the old Warner Bros. logo at the beginning with the newer WB/AOL logo. See more »
Finally, a 'great' 70's film that lives up to the hype
Being such a big movie fan, I discovered there were still many "great" films, especially from the 70's, I haven't seen yet. "Love Story," "The Way We Were," "Straw Dogs" and more, I check them out and they're all overrated tripe.
I was hoping "Dog Day Afternoon" wouldn't fall into that category, and it hasn't. It's actually a very gripping tale and filmed just beautifully, and casted even better. Al Pacino of course is great, and even though he does walk a little close to the "overacting" line (a line he crosses throughout his entire career to some degree) he just stays safe here.
Charles Durning was excellent as the head cop trying to keep things cool, and the scene with him and Pacino simply bickering back and forth is priceless. When the FBI take over at one point, he pretty much disappears for the rest of the movie and it's very noticeable.
This was actually filmed just blocks from where I grew up in Brooklyn so that's another reason I always wanted to see it. I'm shocked this hasn't been on the list for potential remakes, another decent movie ready to be ruined by today's Hollywood.
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