Tough Guys Don't Dance
Tough Guys Don't Dance (1987)

Norman Mailer wrote and directed this demented film noir, which takes place in a Provincetown of perpetual twilight. Most of the tale, based on his best-selling novel, is told in flashback as Dougy Madden (Lawrence Tierney) pays a visit to… More

Directed By:
Rated: R
Running Time:
Release Date: January 1, 1987
DVD Release Date: September 16, 2003
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Critic Score: 37% Rotten Tomatoes™ Critic Reviews
Geoff Andrew
Time Out

Neither thrilling nor horrific, the camera, plotting, dialogue and atmosphere are uniformly unconvincing: a conservatoire of false notes.

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Roger Ebert
Chicago Sun-Times

What is strange is that Tough Guys Don't Dance leaves me with such vivid memories of its times and places, its feelings and weathers, and yet leaves me so completely indifferent to its plot. Watching the film, I laughed a good deal.

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Dennis Schwartz
Ozus' World Movie Reviews

Embarrassingly idiotic high camp modern noir set on Cape Cod.

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Vincent Canby
New York Times

Not the high point of the Mailer career, but it's a small, entertaining part of it.

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Jonathan Rosenbaum
Chicago Reader

Norman Mailer's best film, adapted from his worst novel, shows a surprising amount of cinematic savvy and style.

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Cole Smithey

A juicy cult classic.

Hal Hinson
Washington Post

Hard to classify; at times you laugh raucously at what's up on the screen; at others you stare dumbly, in stunned amazement.

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Cathy Burke
United Press International

There's no denying Mailer is a man with vision, and the eloquence to describe it. It's just that the vision is so troubling, so mean and raw and frightening.

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Chuck O'Leary
Fantastica Daily

Strange and self-indulgent, but oddly entertaining.

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