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Hudson Hawk (1991)

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A cat burglar is forced to steal Da Vinci works of art for a world domination plot.

Director:

Michael Lehmann

Writers:

Bruce Willis (story), Robert Kraft (story) | 2 more credits »
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Popularity
4,482 ( 284)
3 wins & 5 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Bruce Willis ... Hudson Hawk
Danny Aiello ... Tommy Five-Tone
Andie MacDowell ... Anna Baragli
James Coburn ... George Kaplan
Richard E. Grant ... Darwin Mayflower
Sandra Bernhard ... Minerva Mayflower
Donald Burton ... Alfred
Don Harvey ... Snickers
David Caruso ... Kit Kat
Andrew Bryniarski ... Butterfinger
Lorraine Toussaint ... Almond Joy
Burtt Harris Burtt Harris ... Gates
Frank Stallone ... Cesar Mario
Carmine Zozzora Carmine Zozzora ... Antony Mario (as Carmine Zozorra)
Stefano Molinari Stefano Molinari ... Leonardo da Vinci (as Stephano Molinari)
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Storyline

Eddie Hawkins, called Hudson Hawk has just been released from ten years of prison and is planning to spend the rest of his life honestly. But then the crazy Mayflower couple blackmail him to steal some of the works of Leonardo da Vinci. If he refuses, they threaten to kill his friend Tommy. Written by Harald Mayr <marvin@bike.augusta.de>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Catch the excitement. Catch the laughter. Catch the Hawk. See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English | Italian

Release Date:

24 May 1991 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Adventures of Hudson Hawk See more »

Filming Locations:

Hungary See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$65,000,000 (estimated)

Gross USA:

$17,218,080
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

CDS (digital 35 mm prints)| Dolby SR (analog 35 mm prints)

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

In 1980, a young musician-composer-songwriter by the name of Robert Kraft was performing with his group, the Ivory Coast, at a restaurant-nightclub in New York's Greenwich Village. In the midst of a musical number, Kraft found himself unexpectedly accompanied on harmonica by someone in the audience. The man with the harmonica turned out to be bartender and aspiring actor Bruce Willis. The two men became fast friends, and Willis would often turn out for Kraft's engagements, and join in the musical proceedings. Willis, who became intimately acquainted with Kraft's entire musical repertoire, was most taken with one song called "The Hudson Hawk." Kraft had come upon the concept one afternoon while walking the streets of New York. Kraft had read a newspaper article about a fierce wind that blew off Lake Michigan nicknamed "The Hawk," and as he wandered toward the west side of Manhattan, bracing himself against a wind corning from the direction of the Hudson River, he thought, "This must be the Hudson Hawk." When Kraft described the genesis of his song to Willis, the actor thought the music would be fitting as the theme for a classic movie character as well. Intrigued, Kraft offered Willis the opportunity to collaborate on the song by writing the lyrics. As those lyrics evolved, so did the characters of Eddie Hawkin's and his best friend and mentor - Tommy "Five-Tone" Messina. For many years, the song remained just that, with both men vowing that if either were ever in the position to produce a film, it would be about the world's greatest cat burglar. Several years, a hit television show, and Emmy and Golden Globe awards later, Willis indeed found himself in that position, and, true to his word, began developing "Hudson Hawk" with Kraft for the big screen. Needing the services of an experienced producer, Willis turned to Joel Silver, for whom the actor had starred in the smash hit Die Hard (1988) and Die Hard 2 (1990). See more »

Goofs

Any 500-year-old book would fall apart when treated as cavalierly as Hawk treats Da Vinci's notebook. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Narrator: Long ago, the Duke of Milan commissioned a little known artist to erect a Mammoth statue of a horse. The time was 1481... The artist was Leonardo da Vinci... The guy on the donkey's just a guy on a donkey.
See more »

Alternate Versions

The German VHS version contains several more lines of dialog, mostly from characters off-screen to make scenes funny in German. For example: When Hudson Hawk falls into the chair after he jumps from the roof of the auction house, the Butler says he collects Concorde tickets because once you get 100 "you get a stewardess for free" and Antony Mario adds that he would prefer the pilot. See more »

Connections

References In Like Flint (1967) See more »

Soundtracks

THE POWER
Written by Michael Münzing (as Benito Benitez), Luca Anzilotti (as John Garrett III) and Toni C.
Performed by Snap! (as SNAP)
Courtesy of BMG Ariola
Munich/Logic/Arista Records
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
What The...
6 June 2006 | by ReelCheeseSee all my reviews

I'm torn on HUDSON HAWK. After watching it, part of me went, "What the hell was that?" But another part suggested that maybe I wasn't hip enough to "get" what it was trying to do. Part of me thought it was a completely ridiculous waste of time. Part of me thought it was just good, clean fun.

Though certainly not for everybody, there are enough redeeming qualities in HUDSON HAWK to avert its dismissal as a multimillion-dollar turkey. Bruce Willis is Eddie "Hudson Hawk" Hawkins, a cat burglar intent on retiring but who is forced to steal Da Vinci works of art for a (gasp!) world domination plot. Along for the ride are Tommy Five-Tone (Danny Aiello), mysterious nun Anna Baragli (Andie MacDowell) and conniving bad guy George Kaplan (recognize that name?) played by the late James Coburn.

The plot sounds like it could have made for a good DIE HARD-style caper, but director Michael Lehmann had other ideas. As he reveals in the DVD version's audio commentary, HUDSON HAWK was meant first and foremost as a comedy. Trouble is, it was promoted more as a Bruce Willis action blockbuster. Audiences were left scratching their heads as their favorite tough guy engaged in Stooge-like slapstick, sipped cappuccino and, most astoundingly, crooning Crosby classics.

Not that mistaken expectations are the only thing wrong here. Indeed HUDSON HAWK is simply too silly for its own good. The gags frequently fall flat, nearly embarrassing the talented performers involved. The plot is overly convoluted, and Richard E. Grant and Sandra Bernhard as the villainous Mayflowers are a bit hard to take. At its lowest points, you'll be astounded something like this could receive a theatrical release.

To get the most out of HUDSON HAWK, go in with an open mind. It's unlike anything you've seen before -- in both good and bad ways.


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