Tough Guys

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This excessively nostalgic caper comedy has Lancaster and Douglas as ex-cons of pensionable age attempting to fit in with the modern world following a 30-year jail stretch for a train robbery. Douglas, pushy and petulant, flexes his physique with aerobics teacher Fluegel, while Lancaster, more dignified and regretful of time lost, is relegated, jobless, to an old folks home. The observation that 'old is a dirty word' is swiftly shoved aside as the pair strut their stuff, fend off muggers, and indulge in amiably rebellious antics before making one last bid for fame and freedom by hijacking, once again, the Gold Coast Flier. So self-consciously elegiac that its too-good-to-be-true heroes are imprisoned in a slim storyline of implausible fantasy, the movie would have been more effective had Burt and Kirk simply been allowed to be themselves. Of course, it's fun to watch old pros, and Wallach, as a mad, myopic hit-man, is genuinely funny; but one can't help feeling that a rare gathering of Golden Age talent has been criminally wasted.

Release details

Duration: 103 mins

Cast and crew

Director: Jeff Kanew
Screenwriter: James Orr, Jim Cruickshank
Cast: Burt Lancaster
Kirk Douglas
Charles Durning
Alexis Smith
Dana Carvey
Darlanne Fluegel
Eli Wallach
Monty Ash
Billy Barty
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