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Dog Day Afternoon (1975)

(R) 125 mins

Synopsis: True story about a bank robbery gone haywire one hot August day when two optimistic losers, the frantic master-mind Sonny, and his slow-witted buddy Sal, attempt to rob a Brooklyn bank.

Starring: Al Pacino, John Cazale

Supporting Actors: Charles Durning, Chris Sarandon, Sully Boyar

Directed by: Sidney Lumet

Studio: Warner Bros.

Serious Jest: (Rental) 36 years later and this movie is still one of the best heist flicks I’ve seen. The acting is awesome. The Borough of Brooklyn is its own character. The script is money (excuse the pun), and I guess the best stories are true, because this one’s a winner. Make time to see this film at some point in your life.

CraigMakk: (Rental) After reading Jest’s review, I honestly can’t tell why he didn’t give this movie five mugs. But I can tell you why I didn’t. Time and hype affect this movie more than it should. Pacino has become a caricature of himself over the years, and this movie is an example of him chewing up the scene like nobody’s business. John Cazale, however, lives up to his legacy of having the best acting track record of all time, and Chris Sarandon is incredible in the shocking role of Leon. My biggest issue is that the actual story is a bit slow to develop, and Pacino over-acts throughout. Either way, you can’t go wrong with this one, and it is definitely a pop culture watershed movie that you will regret not having seen the next time your pretentious jerk of a “friend” brings it up at a social event. Show him you’re no movie newbie and watch it. Then scream “Attica!” and throw your beer in his face.

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One response to “Dog Day Afternoon (1975)

  1. @CraigMakk I gave this movie 4 mugs because I ultimately decided that it’s a one-time watch, rather than something I’d buy and watch a bunch of times. The movie’s strengths lie in its suspense and character development, but once those surprises are revealed, you’re pretty much left with cool dialogue and good acting (I disagree with you about Pacino for this movie; the caricature you’re referencing didn’t begin until he started being the same person in different, sometimes out-of-place roles) to re-watch. This is less a case of the film doing something badly to keep it from getting 5 mugs, and more of it simply not having that final factor to push it past 4 (which is still a pretty high recommendation; we’re saying you make time to watch this at some point!).

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