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The Color of Money (1986)

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Fast Eddie Felson teaches a cocky but immensely talented protégé the ropes of pool hustling, which in turn inspires him to make an unlikely comeback.

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Writers:

(novel), (screenplay)
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Won 1 Oscar. Another 1 win & 10 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
... Fast Eddie Felson
... Vincent Lauria
... Carmen
... Janelle
... Julian
... Orvis
Robert Agins ... Earl at Chalkie's
Alvin Anastasia ... Kennedy
Randall Arney ... Child World Customer #1
... Diane at Bar
... Lou at Child World
... Guy in Crowd
Lisa Dodson ... Child World Customer #2
Donald A. Feeney ... Referee #1
Paul Geier ... Two Brothers / Stranger Player
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Storyline

Pool hustler Fast Eddie Felson finds the young, promising pool player Vincent in a local bar and he sees in him a younger version of himself. To try and make it as in the old days, Eddie offers to teach Vincent how to be a hustler. After some hesitations Vincent accepts and Eddie takes him and Vincent's girlfriend Carmen on a tour through the country to work the pool halls. However, Vincent's tendency to show off his talent and by doing so warning off the players and losing money, soon leads to a confrontation with Eddie. Written by Leon Wolters <wolters@strw.LeidenUniv.nl>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

The Hustler isn't what he used to be, but he has the next best thing. A kid who is.

Genres:

Drama | Sport

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

|

Release Date:

17 October 1986 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Hustler; 8-Ball  »

Filming Locations:

 »

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Box Office

Budget:

$13,800,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$6,357,877, 19 October 1986, Wide Release

Gross USA:

$52,293,982
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(70 mm prints)| (35 mm prints)

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The first pool hall to which Eddie, Vincent, and Carmen go, was above the Lincoln Tap Room bar on the North side of Chicago. As of February 2015, the bar is still open and directly across from a Church of Scientology. They park and walk past where the church is now located. It's a strange coincidence since Tom Cruise is very big into Scientology. See more »

Goofs

When Vincent is playing Grady Seasons in the tournament, at one point, he shoots and misses an easy shot of the eight ball into the side pocket. While the camera moves with the shot, you see that the three ball is still on the table on the other side rail, indicating that he is aiming for balls out of order of nine-ball rules. See more »

Quotes

Eddie Felson: Where's the Balabushka?
Carmen: Vincent took it.
Eddie Felson: You said he was out.
Carmen: He was in and out.
Eddie Felson: He took the cue stick?
Carmen: Yes.
Eddie Felson: And you let him?
Carmen: Well, so what?
Eddie Felson: Shit.
Carmen: Oh, man, I'm sorry.
[...]
See more »

Crazy Credits

Dog Walkby (Zoe) See more »

Connections

Referenced in The Directors: The Films of Martin Scorsese (2000) See more »

Soundtracks

The Day the Rains Came
(Le Jour où la Pluie Viendra)
Music by Gilbert Bécaud
French lyrics by Pierre Delanoë
English lyrics by Carl Sigman
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Fast Eddie is back!
28 April 2005 | by See all my reviews

People misunderstood "The Color of Money," I think. There are a few things to keep in mind:

1) This was a Martin Scorsese film. Scorsese was fresh off "Taxi Driver," "Raging Bull," and other such successes from less than a decade before. People were expecting a lot.

2) It starred Paul Newman, returning to his character from "The Hustler," in a sequel that was twenty-five years in the making. That's longer than the wait for the "Phantom Menace" prequel.

Perhaps for those two (very strong) reasons alone, when "The Color of Money" opened in 1986, the critics and audiences didn't think much of it. It garnered decent praise from both areas but most critics seemed to agree: it didn't hold a candle to "The Hustler," and anyone other than Scorsese could have easily made the same picture.

After 19 years, I disagree. I think "The Color of Money" is not only an intelligent and amusing character piece, but an excellent continuation of a character we haven't seen for 25 years.

First of all, Scorsese's direction isn't his best, but it's still very good. And he's definitely got the same elements going on as "After Hours" from a few years before -- his cinematography is identical and the dark colors and grainy '80s vibe are present in every frame. Likewise he's using the quick-cuts and zooms and iconic panning shots that he's known for. The thing is, Scorsese's styles just changed a bit during the 1980s (they even carried on into "GoodFellas" -- the night-time shots carry the same foreboding look as "After Hours" and "Color of Money"). I think now, looking back, since we've seen more of Scorsese's films, it's easier to notice that this is indeed a Martin Scorsese film. A man who is constantly changing his directorial approach. (Just look at "The Aviator" for goodness sake!) Newman deserved the Oscar more for "The Hustler," of course, but for what it's worth, Fast Eddie Felson's evolution is handled with care in the script and it's very entertaining (for anyone who's seen the original) to note the change in his behavior. It's also interesting to see the new cocky pool hustler, Vince (Tom Cruise), filling in the shoes of Eddie from a few decades before.

If "The Hustler" was a great insight into the life of a troubled young man, then "The Color of Money" is a terrific insight into the evolution of this man, and the contrast between the young and the old. All adults tell us as children that they were just like us at one time, and we don't believe them. "The Color of Money" follows this principal -- in thirty years, we all know Vince will be just like Fast Eddie: wise and matured. And then he'll probably be coaching a young guy who thinks he's the king of the world. Will they make another sequel based on this continuation of the story? I doubt it. It's unnecessary, because as far as I'm concerned "The Color of Money" has already stressed the point. But you never know...

Overall this isn't a great movie and I won't pretend it is. But I do think it's one of the better films to come out of the 1980s and had a lot more going for it than some of the critics gave it credit for. Film buffs should see it, especially those who loved "The Hustler."


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