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Rumble Fish (1983)

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Rusty James, an absent-minded street thug struggles to live up to his legendary older brother's reputation, and longs for the days when gang warfare was going on.

Writers:

S.E. Hinton (novel), S.E. Hinton (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
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Popularity
4,895 ( 526)
Nominated for 1 Golden Globe. Another 3 wins & 2 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Matt Dillon ... Rusty James
Mickey Rourke ... The Motorcycle Boy
Diane Lane ... Patty
Dennis Hopper ... Father
Diana Scarwid ... Cassandra
Vincent Spano ... Steve
Nicolas Cage ... Smokey
Chris Penn ... B.J. Jackson (as Christopher Penn)
Laurence Fishburne ... Midget (as Larry Fishburne)
William Smith ... Patterson the Cop
Michael Higgins ... Mr. Harrigan
Glenn Withrow ... Biff Wilcox
Tom Waits ... Benny
Herb Rice ... Black Pool Player
Maybelle Wallace Maybelle Wallace ... Late Pass Clerk
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Storyline

Rusty James is the leader of a small, dying gang in an industrial town. He lives in the shadow of the memory of his absent, older brother -- The Motorcycle Boy. His mother has left, his father drinks, school has no meaning for him and his relationships are shallow. He is drawn into one more gang fight and the events that follow begin to change his life. Written by Bruce Janson <bruce@cs.su.oz.au>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

No leader can survive becoming a legend. See more »

Genres:

Crime | Drama | Romance

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

21 October 1983 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

La ley de la calle See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$10,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$18,985, 10 October 1983, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$2,494,480
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby

Color:

Black and White | Color (some shots)

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

Diane Lane and Laurence Fishburne also appeared in The Cotton Club (1984), Man of Steel (2013) and Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice (2016). See more »

Goofs

In the arcade, Rusty James is playing the video game "Pole Position", but the sound effects are from the game, "Pac Man". See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Midget: Biff Wilcox is looking for you, Rusty James. He's gonna kill you, Rusty James.
See more »

Alternate Versions

Some TV versions include a scene where the gym teacher offers to pay Rusty-James if he beats up a kid. See more »

Connections

Referenced in True Romance (1993) See more »

Soundtracks

Don't Box Me In
Written by Stewart Copeland and Stan Ridgway
Performed by Stewart Copeland and Stan Ridgway
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
Stylish,
19 May 1999 | by barfly99See all my reviews

Francis Ford Coppola's most personal film is also one of his best - in its own way just as good as APOCALYPSE NOW and THE GODFATHER films. Those who wonder why Mickey Rourke is so revered by cult film fans need look no further than his almost-hypnotic performance as The Motorcycle Boy. But Matt Dillon is just as good as his younger brother, and when you also have the likes of Nic Cage, Diane Lane, Dennis Hopper, Laurence Fishburne, and Chris Penn in the supporting cast, you know it's a once-in-a-lifetime movie. The look of the film - a sparse black-and-white urban landscape - is perfect, as is Stewart Copeland's atmospheric music. But aside from the visual and aural pyrotechnics, what really singles this out as a bona fide classic is its spot-on portrayal of disaffected youth. When Hopper describes to Dillon how Rourke has simply been "miscast in the play", I still feel shivers running down my spine...


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