August 22nd, 2011: Dog Day Afternoon (1975)

Cast and Crew:  Charles Durning, Chris Sarandon, Carol Kane, Lance Henriksen, Dominic Chianese

What It’s About: Sonny (Al Pacino) and Sal (John Cazale) try to rob the First Savings Bank of Brooklyn on a hot summer afternoon, but the robbery quickly becomes a hostage situation, which the charismatic Sonny turns into a media circus.

Why Watch it Today?: The real life robbery Dog Day Afternoon was based upon happened today in 1972.  Sidney Lumet’s film adaptation features a great lead performance from Pacino backed by Cazale and a strong supporting cast, a wicked strain of black humor, rousing moments and a few surprises.

Where to Get It:  Watch online at Amazon, iTunes, Comcast, YouTube or Netflix, Libraries

3 comments on “August 22nd, 2011: Dog Day Afternoon (1975)

  1. Still my favorite Pacino performance. I can’t watch him in anything else without expecting him to shout “ATTICA!” And now matter how many times I see this, I’m always surprised by Lance Henriksen’s baby face. I don’t know what happened to him during the early 80s, but it’s like he tried to stare down the Evil Dead movie’s Great Darkness. I guess being in Omen II and Piranha II within three years of each other would rapidly age anyone.

    • professormortis says:

      You know, this could be the reason I don’t like Pacino that much. This was the first Pacino film I saw; the second was The Godfather. Everything since then has been kind of iffy.

      You gotta love having Lance Henriksen in there. Baby face might fool you at first, but when the time comes, that’s good ole Lance. Chris Sarandon, on the other hand, is pretty far from his roles in The Princess Bride and Fright Night!

  2. sakara says:

    to paraphase the poster: the movie should have been 90 gripping minutes long, instead it was dragged out to over 2 hours!

    and it’s kinda true; lumet on director commentary said how he toned down some of the really weird stuff.

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