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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.

Director:

Martin Scorsese

Writers:

Walter Tevis (novel), Richard Price (screenplay)
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Popularity
4,429 ( 940)
Won 1 Oscar. Another 2 wins & 9 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Paul Newman ... Fast Eddie Felson
Tom Cruise ... Vincent Lauria
Mary Elizabeth Mastrantonio ... Carmen
Helen Shaver ... Janelle
John Turturro ... Julian
Bill Cobbs ... Orvis
Robert Agins Robert Agins ... Earl at Chalkie's
Alvin Anastasia Alvin Anastasia ... Kennedy
Randall Arney Randall Arney ... Child World Customer #1
Elizabeth Bracco ... Diane at Bar
Vito D'Ambrosio ... Lou at Child World
Ron Dean ... Guy in Crowd
Lisa Dodson Lisa Dodson ... Child World Customer #2
Donald A. Feeney Donald A. Feeney ... Referee #1
Paul Geier 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:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English | Spanish

Release Date:

17 October 1986 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Hustler; 8-Ball See more »

Filming Locations:

Atlantic City, New Jersey, USA See more »

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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 IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

70 mm 6-Track (70 mm prints)| Dolby (35 mm prints)

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

At one point, Eddie tells Vincent he hasn't played serious pool since before Vincent was born. In real life, Tom Cruise wasn't born until the year after The Hustler (1961) was released. See more »

Goofs

Vincent's deliberate jump shot is illegal, and a serious foul. He would not have won that frame. Eddie would have. See more »

Quotes

Eddie Felson: Money won is twice as sweet as money earned.
See more »

Crazy Credits

Dog Walkby (Zoe) See more »

Connections

Featured in I Love the 80's 3-D: 1986 (2005) See more »

Soundtracks

My Baby's In Love With Another Guy
Written by Lawrence Lucie and Herman Brightman
Performed by Robert Palmer
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Fast Eddie is back!
28 April 2005 | by MovieAddict2016See 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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