4.9/10
556
23 user 8 critic

Alphabet City (1984)

A New York City drug dealer decides to get out of the business, but has to flee from mobsters.

Director:

Amos Poe

Writers:

Gregory K. Heller (screenplay), Amos Poe (screenplay) | 2 more credits »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Vincent Spano ... Johnny
Michael Winslow ... Lippy
Kate Vernon ... Angie
Jami Gertz ... Sophia
Zohra Lampert ... Mama
Raymond Serra Raymond Serra ... Gino (as Ray Serra)
Kenny Marino Kenny Marino ... Tony
Daniel Jordano ... Juani
Tom Mardirosian ... Benny
Christina Marie Denihan Christina Marie Denihan ... Baby Renee
Tom Wright ... Chauffeur
Bruno Damon Bruno Damon ... Mama's Friend
Clifton Powell ... Ramon
Richard Bassett Richard Bassett ... Preppie
John McCurry John McCurry ... Junkie / Guard #1
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Storyline

A New York City drug dealer decides to get out of the business, but has to flee from mobsters.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

At 19, they gave him the streets. Tonight, they're going to take them back.

Genres:

Crime | Drama | Thriller

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

26 November 1984 (Denmark) See more »

Also Known As:

ABC-város See more »

Filming Locations:

New York City, New York, USA

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$1,172,292, 6 May 1984

Gross USA:

$7,035,585

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$7,035,585
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

Project was originally supposed to be black and white because director Amos Poe's favorite film at the time was The Battle of Algiers (1966), so he wanted to make "The Battle of Algiers (1966) in the Lower East Side". The producers did not agree. See more »

Goofs

(at around 1h 19 mins) Shadow of camera visible. See more »

Soundtracks

Lady Luck
Written by Nile Rodgers
Performed by Maura Moynihan
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Not bad 80's artifact.
26 December 2011 | by Hey_SwedenSee all my reviews

Passable urban action / crime flick starring Vincent Spano as Johnny, a young thug who gets into big trouble when his mobster bosses order him to torch a building, and because this is the same building in which his mom (Zohra Lampert) and sister (Jami Gertz) reside, he stalls and then ultimately defies them. If anything, "Alphabet City" is certainly a very slick affair, and it's no surprise that the director, Amos Poe, had music video experience. On the plus side, it is incredibly fast paced, and stylish, but in the end it's quite unmemorable. It's just too hard to care very much about any of these characters. The acting is generally competent but the performers are all basically playing archetypes, existing in a pretty standard story of people trying to rise above their meagre surroundings. It IS a treat to see the interesting Ms. Lampert; cult horror fans will recognize her from the 1971 favourite "Let's Scare Jessica to Death". Spano exerts a respectable amount of "cool" in the lead, with amusing support from Michael Winslow, best known as Jones from the "Police Academy" franchise who does have some dramatic moments here but also the opportunity to do some more of the sound effects shtick for which he's famous. Gorgeous Kate Vernon (daughter of the legendary John Vernon) is pleasing to look at, if not terribly convincing, in her first major role, and the same goes for the young Gertz. Familiar folk in smaller roles include Raymond Serra as the mob boss Gino, Tom Mardirosian as Benny, Tom Wright as a chauffeur, Clifton Powell as Ramon, and Miguel Pinero, creator of the stage play "Short Eyes", as a dealer. The dated pop soundtrack is good for some amusement, if also rather repetitive; the main music score is by industry great Nile Rodgers. The NYC location filming is a big, big asset. The climactic action, however, ends up descending into silliness. Overall, a fairly entertaining melodramatic little flick. Five out of 10.


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