Midnight Cowboy (1969)

Midnight Cowboy not only turned out to be the worse Best Picture film I have ever seen, but it is also definitely one of the worse movies I have ever seen in my lifetime. 

I have never seen a film that I didn’t like as much as this one, which starred two Hollywood legends, Dustin Hoffman and Jon Voight. As the only Oscar winner with an R rating, this story about two hustlers never clicked with me. 

Most of you probably know by now that I love New York City and will watch anything set in the Big Apple. This film piqued my interest because of the setting and the two leads. However, I did not expect what I saw. 

Voight plays Joe Buck, a Texan who moved to New York to be a male prostitute. He bumps into Enrico Rizzo (Hoffman), a con man who offers to help him get set up after going it alone ends in failure. Together these two form the unlikeliest bond I’ve ever seen in a movie and share living quarters in a run-down building. Rizzo’s health goes pretty quick, which forces Joe to make some shady decisions to raise money so they can live out their dreams in Florida. 

This movie has a bunch of sex scenes and one rather odd scene that is disturbing. Joe finds himself desperate for cash and allows another man to pleasure him at a movie theatre. I couldn’t stomach what I was watching. Then there is a portion of the film where Joe and Enrico go to a party and partake in drug use that leads to a whole bunch of hallucinations. If those scenes weren’t enough, there are a dozen or more flashbacks to Joe’s youth where he was in love with a girl who got gang-raped in front of him. 

Sex is a major plot device in the movie. It doesn’t matter who is getting or giving; it is just everywhere and keeps the story moving forward. I didn’t like any of it and found most of the film to be disturbing. It also made me upset that two people I have always respected in the film would be associated with such a messed-up story. 

From my understanding, Midnight Cowboy is the perfect depiction of the slums in New York in the late 1960s. If you didn’t have money and found yourself struggling, the actions showcased by the characters in this film are a great example of how to survive. I’m thankful I didn’t live there during that time because I can’t picture the city like that. I understand that one of the world’s largest cities still has its issues; I just can’t see them being like this. 

I will never watch Midnight Cowboy again, and I’d advise you to steer clear of the Academy award winner. 1/10


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