Cruising (1980)

A New York City cop goes undercover in New York's gay community to catch a serial killer.

Directed By:
Rated: R
Running Time:
Release Date: February 8, 1980
DVD Release Date: September 18, 2007
Add Your Rating
Rotten Tomatoes™
Critic Score
User Score

Also Available On

Critic Score: 50% Rotten Tomatoes™ Critic Reviews
Roger Ebert
Chicago Sun-Times

What we're left with is a movie without the courage to declare itself.

Full review…
Variety Staff

Taking away the kissing, caressing and a few bloody killings, Friedkin has no story, though picture pretends to be a murder mystery combined with a study of Al Pacino's psychological degradation.

Full review…
Tim Brayton
Antagony & Ecstasy

It's certainly not the grotesque failure of art and morality described in 1980... But a failure nonetheless.

Full review…
Frank Rich
TIME Magazine

This detective melodrama has something to offend almost everyone.

Full review…
Jack Mathews
New York Daily News

Its gamy images inside the leather and S&M gay bars along the Greenwich Village waterfront are both busy and dark.

Full review…
People Magazine

Appropriately framed by opening and closing shots of a garbage scow, Cruising is trash.

Full review…
Dave Kehr
Chicago Reader

What's left is the framework for a graphic, brutal, sickening film, without the violent effects that might have made sense (however illegitimate) out of the conception.

Full review…
Andrew O'Hehir

No one would get away with it now, or even try.

Full review…
Adrian Turner
Radio Times

While the savagery of the murders and the explicitness of the sexual practices on display are initially unsettling, they soon become numbing and, ultimately, yawn-inducing.

Full review…
More reviews for Cruising

Flixster Audience Score: 49% Flixster User Reviews
Christian C
Interesting film -- if for no other reason than to see gay stereotypes from the late 1970s and early 1980s. Bold role for Paccino, played convincingly.
Adam Mahler
Friedkin uses the gay leather scene to show NYC as an abattoir where two will go out at night to play a game trading turns as butcher and meat. They often get… More
Reid Volk
With the 80's explosion of homosexuality in the mainstream, director William Friedkin set out to explore the tension that consumed New York during this… More
Mark Hobin
Unsettling slasher film masquerading as a crime thriller. NYC cop goes undercover in the gay underworld of S&M leather bars in order to uncover a murderer… More
Steve K
A compelling look at the gay underground in late 70's NYC, with a complex Pacino performance. Unfortunately, there is ample evidence of studio tinkering,… More
Lady D'arbanville
Highly controversial in it?s time, both in subject matter and portraying the Gay scene and Leather scene in a bad light. It?s very much a film way ahead of… More