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The Hustler
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The Hustler

As The Hustler's 'Fast' Eddie Felson, Paul Newman created a classic antihero, charismatic but fundamentally flawed, and nobody's role model. A pool player from Oakland, CA, as good as anyone who ever picked up a cue, Eddie has an Achilles' heel: arrogance. It's not enough for him to win: he must force his opponent to acknowledge his superiority. The movie follows Eddie from his match against billiards champ Minnesota Fats (Jackie Gleason) as he falls in love with Sarah (Piper Laurie), an alcoholic would-be writer and sometime prostitute, and falls under the spell of Bert Gordon (George C. Scott), a successful gambler who offers to take Eddie under his wing and teach him how to play in the big time. However, when Sarah joins Eddie and Bert on a trip to Louisville for a high-stakes match with a dandy named Findlay (Murray Hamilton), the consequences prove tragic. Along with a classic performance by Newman, The Hustler also features turns by Scott, Laurie, and Gleason, in a rare dramatic role. Cameos from pool champ Willie Mosconi and boxer Jake LaMotta add to the atmosphere of Harry Horner's grubby production design and Eugen SchĂźfftan's camerawork. Director Robert Rossen, who had been working in films since 1937, was to direct only one more film, Lilith (1964), before his death in 1966. In 1986, Newman returned to the role of 'Fast' Eddie in Martin Scorsese's The Color of Money, for which he finally earned an Academy Award as Best Actor.
Actors: Gordon B. Clarke,
Gordon B. Clarke
Gordon B. Clarke May 2, 1906 in St. Paul, Minnesota, USA
Charles Dierkop,
Charles Dierkop
Charles Dierkop 11 September 1936, La Crosse, Wisconsin, USA
Jackie Gleason,
Jackie Gleason
Jackie Gleason 26 February 1916, Bushwick, Brooklyn, New York City, New York, USA
Brendan Fay,
Brendan Fay
Brendan Fay 1 July 1920, New York City, New York, USA
Don Crabtree,
Don Crabtree
Don Crabtree August 21, 1928 in Borger, Texas, USA
Carl York,
Carl York
Carl York
James Dukas,
James Dukas
James Dukas 6 June 1926, Portsmouth, Ohio, USA
Charles McDaniel,
Charles McDaniel
Charles McDaniel 28 August 1930, New York, USA
Alexander Rose,
Alexander Rose
Alexander Rose
William Duell,
William Duell
William Duell 30 August 1923, Corinth, New York, USA
Murray Hamilton,
Murray Hamilton
Murray Hamilton 24 March 1923, Washington, North Carolina, USA
Genre: DramaSport
Director: Robert Rossen
Country: United States
Release: 1961
IMDb: 8.0
Duration: 134 min
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The Hustler
CRITICS OF "The Hustler"
Cinema Sight

April 11, 2011

A raft of excellent performances buoy a fervent tale of weakness and success.
The New Republic

January 27, 2016

Rosen, the co-author, has directed with a sure, economical hand. Newman is first-rate.
Common Sense Media

December 28, 2010

Like a traditional morality play; teens and up.
New York Times

May 20, 2003

Under Robert Rossen's strong direction, its ruthless and odorous account of one young hustler's eventual emancipation is positive and alive.
Combustible Celluloid

May 20, 2011

This is one of Newman's very best films, if not his best, even if it's relentlessly depressing.

January 13, 2017

Paul Newman is cocky poolroom hustler "Fast" Eddie Felson, a swaggering pool shark punk who works his trade in dingy bars and seedy poolrooms, in Robert Rossen's atmospheric adaptation of the Walter Tevis novel.
Hollywood Reporter

September 25, 2018

Newman gives a restrained, modulated performance, an unusual one in that character development is sought and achieved with utilization only of voice, gesture, intensity.

March 21, 2007

The Hustler belongs to that school of screen realism that allows impressive performances but defeats the basic goal of pure entertainment.

June 20, 2011

So much more than the ups and downs of one pool player--It's shot in a very realistic way and deals with inner conflict and what it means to be a man.
TIME Magazine

August 03, 2008

Newman is better than usual; Gleason, as the slit-mouthed, beady-eyed Minnesota Fats, darts among the shabby little pool sharks like an improbably agile and natty whale; and Gambler Scott looks as though he could sell hot-air heat to the devil.

September 24, 2013

A crackling good morality tale
Time Out

June 24, 2006

A wonderful hymn to the last true era when men of substance played pool with a vengeance.