Atlantic City is a place where people go to realize their dreams, the promise of the future manifested by the demolition of the old crumbling buildings to be replaced by new hotels and casinos. Someone who recently came to Atlantic City for that promise is native Moose Javian (Saskatchewan) Sally Matthews, who currently works as a waitress at a hotel oyster bar, but who is training to be a black jack croupier and wants to be more cultured, such as learning French, in order to work at the casinos in Monte Carlo. Another dreamer who came to Atlantic City decades ago is Lou Pascal, who has long worked as a numbers runner and who claims to have been a cellmate and thus implied confidante of Bugsy Siegel. Although Lou still dresses to the standard to which he is accustomed, his dream long died as he only works penny ante stuff for Fred, most of his current income from being the kept man of widowed recluse, Grace Pinza. Grace too came to Atlantic City to fulfill her dreams - most ...Written by
Henry Fonda, James Mason, Laurence Olivier, James Stewart and Robert Mitchum were all considered to play the lead role of Lou. Fonda was rejected due to ill-health and its associated insurance risk. Reportedly, when the producers saw that Mitchum had had a face-lift recently, they lost interest. Mitchum had said to them: "I just had my face lifted, and I only play under 45 now.". Director Louis Malle once commented on Burt Lancaster's reaction to the lead role: "Burt had read the screenplay and the first thing that he said was, 'A part like that, especially at my age, happens every ten years, if you're lucky.' He knew it was a great part and I really appreciated that he understood that right away.". See more »
Lancaster spies on Sarandon as she squeezes lemon juice on herself. He is obviously looking across a courtyard or open space between apartment buildings. However, as revealed later, the two characters live next door to each other. The only way the spying could be possible is if Sarandon had a gigantic apartment that wrapped around a side of the building to have living space across from Lancaster's apartment. Interiors of her apartment did not make such a large apartment seem possible. See more »
Yes, it used to be beautiful - what with the rackets, whoring, guns.
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As the end credits roll, an old building on the boardwalk is demolished to some of the tunes that appear earlier in the film. Each time the wrecking ball hits, we hear a cymbal crash and the soundtrack jumps to a different song. See more »
ATLANTIC CITY is one of those perfect little movies in which writing, direction, acting, and setting all come together seamlessly. The story is a subtle and wistful blending of comedy and drama that is both true to life and touching. There is great resonance between the characters' situations and the mood of Atlantic City, beautifully captured at a pivotal time in its history. Burt Lancaster gives one of the great performances of all time and really should have won the Oscar. Susan Sarandon is also superb, and their scenes together are unforgettable. Kate Reid as a faded gangster's moll is a standout in the fine supporting cast. This is perhaps Louis Malle's finest movie, and, in my opinion, one of the 10 best movies of the 80s.
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