7.6/10
6,271
54 user 37 critic

Prince of the City (1981)

R | | Crime, Drama | 21 August 1981 (USA)
A New York City narcotics detective reluctantly agrees to cooperate with a special commission investigating police corruption. However, he soon discovers that he's in over his head, and nobody can be trusted.

Director:

Sidney Lumet

Writers:

Jay Presson Allen (screenplay), Sidney Lumet (screenplay) | 1 more credit »

On Disc

at Amazon

Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 4 wins & 14 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Treat Williams ... Detective Daniel Ciello
Jerry Orbach ... Detective Gus Levy
Richard Foronjy ... Detective Joe Marinaro
Don Billett Don Billett ... Detective Bill Mayo
Kenny Marino Kenny Marino ... Dom Bando
Carmine Caridi ... Detective Gino Mascone
Tony Page ... Detective Raf Alvarez
Norman Parker ... Assistant U.S. Atty. Rick Cappalino
Paul Roebling Paul Roebling ... Assistant U.S. Atty. Brooks Paige
Bob Balaban ... Santimassino
James Tolkan ... Assistant U.S. Atty. George Polito
Steve Inwood Steve Inwood ... Assistant U.S. Atty. Mario Vincente
Lindsay Crouse ... Carla Ciello
Matthew Laurance ... Ronnie Ciello
Tony Turco Tony Turco ... Socks Ciello
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Storyline

New York City cop Daniel Ciello is involved in some questionable police practices. He is approached by internal affairs and in exchange for him potentially being let off the hook, he is instructed to begin to expose the inner workings of police corruption. Danny agrees as long as he does not have to turn in his partners but he soon learns that he cannot trust anyone and he must decide whose side he is on and who is on his. Written by Josh Pasnak <chainsaw@intouch.bc.ca>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

A cop is turning. Nobody's safe.

Genres:

Crime | Drama

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English | Spanish | Italian

Release Date:

21 August 1981 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

El príncipe de la ciudad See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$8,600,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$64,713, 23 August 1981, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$8,124,257
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Orion Pictures See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Robert De Niro was set to star at one point when De Palma was involved. See more »

Goofs

Near the start of the film when Dan is pushing his brother Ronnie around, there's a large crack on the wall (probably from a previous shot). After he pushes Ronnie near the wall, another large crack appears but Ronnie is never shown hitting the wall. See more »

Quotes

Gus Levy: [grabbing Polito by the lapels] I'll tell you what I'm in a position to do, and that's throw you out the fuckin' window. It's only the fifth floor, but I'll try to aim you so you land on your pointed little head.
District Attorney Polito: Levy, you can easily avoid trial. All you have to do is cooperate.
Gus Levy: Fuck it. You got your mind made up to try me? Go ahead and try me. But not for a lousy 400 dollars. At least get me for assault.
[knees Polito in the groin]
See more »

Alternate Versions

The film originally premiered on TV in a version broadcast over 4 hours (running no longer than 196 minutes), including previously unseen material which had been cut from the 167-minute theatrical release. Among the restored scenes is one that makes more sense of the DiBenadetto Case (the character Ciello's first rat-job). See more »

Connections

Referenced in Prince of the City: The Real Story (2007) See more »

Soundtracks

Love Will Keep Us Together
(uncredited)
Written by Neil Sedaka and Howard Greenfield
Performed by Captain & Tennille
See more »

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User Reviews

terrible Treat Williams – mediocre, dragging script – below average 2h40 cop movie
20 June 2011 | by me-justamanSee all my reviews

this "cop-rats on cops" story was probably meant to impress in 1976. But it didn't age well. We are left with the clichés, a dragging, heavy script that is plain factual, and terrible acting.

Treat Williams is ridiculous. He over-acts like those actors from the mute cinema era. but more than that, literally CRY like a child, his face full of tears, every over scene in a movie that last 2h40!!

Result: He is very annoying, and you end up feeling embarrassed that this guy can get lead roles. 10 minutes into the movie, you can't stand him anymore and wish you never see him act ever again.

The direction of Sydney Lumet is clean and professional as usual. But the script is so full of clichés, so heavy and demonstrative! Nothing gets to you: the characters, the story, the whole movie drags endlessly. It has absolutely no invention, no craftiness. It is plain flat.

A below average cop movie that wants to be big, 2h40 minutes of plain "cop rats on cops story". No twists in the plot. Mediocre dialog. Bad actors... And Treat Williams cries and makes "hurt" faces as to tell you : look, something is happening!

Not even nice vintage shots of the New York of the time. Avoid it.


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