7.8/10
99,389
396 user 123 critic

Midnight Cowboy (1969)

R | | Drama | 25 May 1969 (USA)
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1:16 | Clip
A naive hustler travels from Texas to New York City to seek personal fortune, finding a new friend in the process.

Director:

John Schlesinger

Writers:

Waldo Salt (screenplay), James Leo Herlihy (based on the novel by)
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Popularity
2,254 ( 923)
Won 3 Oscars. Another 25 wins & 16 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Dustin Hoffman ... Ratso
Jon Voight ... Joe Buck
Sylvia Miles ... Cass
John McGiver ... Mr. O'Daniel
Brenda Vaccaro ... Shirley
Barnard Hughes ... Towny
Ruth White ... Sally Buck - Texas
Jennifer Salt ... Annie - Texas
Gilman Rankin ... Woodsy Niles - Texas (as Gil Rankin)
Gary Owens Gary Owens ... Little Joe - Texas
T. Tom Marlow T. Tom Marlow ... Little Joe - Texas
George Eppersen ... Ralph - Texas
Al Scott Al Scott ... Cafeteria Manager - Texas
Linda Davis Linda Davis ... Mother on the Bus - Texas
J.T. Masters J.T. Masters ... Old Cow-Hand - Texas
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Storyline

Texas greenhorn Joe Buck arrives in New York City for the first time. Preening himself as a real "hustler", he finds that he is the one getting "hustled" until he teams up with down-and-out but resilient outcast Ratso Rizzo. The initial "country cousin meets city cousin" relationship deepens. In their efforts to bilk a hostile world rebuffing them at every turn, this unlikely pair progress from partners in shady business to comrades. Each has found his first real friend. Written by alfiehitchie

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Whatever you hear about Midnight Cowboy is true. See more »

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Dustin Hoffman was originally chosen for the role of Ratso on the basis of an off-Broadway one-man show called "Eh!" in which producer Jerome Hellman saw him in 1965. See more »

Goofs

After Joe Buck's encounter with Towny, he and Ratso board the bus to Miami. But the bus then enters the south tube of the Lincoln Tunnel, which only carries eastbound traffic into New York. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Joe Buck: Whoopee-tee-yi-yo. Get along little dogies. It's your misfortune and none of my own.
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Alternate Versions

ABC edited 25 minutes from this film for its 1974 network television premiere. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Zabranjeni bez zabrane (2007) See more »

Soundtracks

Old Man Willow
Music and Lyrics by Richard Sussman (uncredited), Michal Shapiro (uncredited), Myron Yules (uncredited) and Stan Bronstein (uncredited)
Produced by Wes Farrell for Buddah Records
Sung by Elephant's Memory (as Elephants Memory)
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User Reviews

 
almost perfect time capsule of 1969
1 March 2012 | by ptb-8See all my reviews

I saw MIDNIGHT COWBOY in easter 1970 when i was 15. It was at a very quiet matinée in a very cold rural mountain holiday resort town in in Australia. I was alone as I had gone for a walk but discovered I was in time for the matinée. It was one of the great cinema experiences of my teenage life and left an impression on me that still resonates. After the screening, it was freezing and foggy outside and almost dark. I walked to a nearby park in the freezing fog, sat on a wet bench and cried and cried until the tears began to freeze too. I wiped them away and went home for dinner. Nobody the wiser except me. Recently I was the film again for the first time in 40 years. I am simply awestruck at the sense of NY 1969 that floods from the screen, the sense of the time anywhere in 1969 and the fact that the film is shattering in it's depiction of poverty and friendship in a bleak city. Recently I also went to NY and found that as fascinating for I felt NY was completely safe and totally unlike the squalor seen in their lives in the film. NY today is very pretty and epic and like a fun park. I have enduring respect and admiration for this extraordinary film. I hope you do too. The performances by Voight and Hoffman are award worthy, and Joe Buck, like Forrest Gump is the sexy flip side of the American Everyman. Directed by a Brit: John Schlesinger whose International eye for NY and the tawdry but fascinating life of USA 1969 has allowed this film to be as great as it is, only made one other great American films and that is the equally tangible and shocking Hollywood pit of 1937 called DAY OF THE LOCUST. Both films have trailers which every young film maker today should study for a perfect lesson in 'preview' creation.


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Frequently Asked Questions

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Details

Official Sites:

MGM

Country:

USA

Language:

English | Italian

Release Date:

25 May 1969 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Midnight Cowboy See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$3,600,000 (estimated)

Gross USA:

$44,785,053

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$44,801,177
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »

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