Con man Enrico “Ratso” Rizzo and Texan hustler, Joe Buck, form a rough alliance in order to survive the mean streets of New York. As they kick-start Joe’s hustling career, Ratso’s health begins to deteriorate.
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Dustin Hoffman probably deserved the Oscar for this one, but John Wayne won, because he was the sentimental choice. At the time, many people thought it went too far, but if you look at it now,you wouldn't be wrong in thinking it didn't go far enough. It did win best picture, which pissed off Wayne because he was a bit of a homophobe.
the symbolism, flashbacks ("you're the only one, joe"), and themes are so sickeningly heavy-handed that any sort of attachment you're supposed to feel to voight or hoffman's character(s) is lost. brilliantly stylish but certainly not as moving as it could've been.
A milestone of the 60s cinema re-birth. one way ticket to the decandence and misery of NYC.
Voight and Hoffman are two hustlers with hope, innocence and compassion for each other.
Raw and brutal and yet fascinatingly lyrical.
Fantastic character study that is oppressively sad and bleak, but it's also a great time capsule of late 60s NYC. Stunning performances. I fail to see the significance of the ending, and I almost gave this four stars, but what the hell, five because I'm too damn generous.