‘Midnight Cowboy’ Blu-ray Review (Criterion)

Stars: Dustin Hoffman, Jon Voight, Sylvia Miles, John McGiver, Georgann Johnson | Written by Waldo Salt | Directed by John Schlesinger

“Where’s that Joe Buck?” the Texan locals ask. Here he is: it’s Jon Voight, a New Yorker playing a Deep Southern wannabe gigolo in flamboyant cowboy getup. Voight looks as pretty as his daughter playing the doe-eyed Joe, who ditches his grimy cafe job and sets off for the Big Apple to make a living sleeping with wealthy older women, while Fred Neil’s insufferably catchy “Everybody’s Talkin’” hums on the soundtrack.

Joe is confident and fearless, simple and childlike, but NYC isn’t all he hoped. Nothing of what he hoped. He’s a fish out of water. Shot from low angles, Manhattan appears more vertical and dwarfing than ever (Joe was the tallest structure back in Texas). This is Manhattan from a much scuzzier era: all neon vice and deviancy,
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