Pocket Money - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Pocket Money Reviews

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March 24, 2018
Pocket Money is a remarkable, wonderful film. I cable-TV ran across it several years ago and watched it two or three times - and loved it -- before it seemed to vanish into the mists of time. Recently doing a web search trying to find a copy, I ran across the RT mention. Much to my surprise RT listed the script as being written by Terrence Malick, who has made several of my most favorite pictures.

The dialogue - the chemistry - between Newman and Marvin is deliciously clever, and the overall TexMex texture of the movie is thick and rich, and rings entirely authentic. This is not a movie for clods; rather, one for appreciators of nuanced, genuine art.
½ May 22, 2014
Forget the uncomprehending raters and take the time to gather in and appreciate one of the best of those special films that made the 70s such a classic era for American cinema: cynical, real world with real men, outstandingly written and acted with a slice-of-life narrative unlike any other you have seen. It takes you on a ground level journey through the lives of the tread-upon, dispossessed, deluded and proudly unbowed. It is hopeful and life affirming, and features a superb script from Terence Malick. This is the sort of movie you have to provide the interstitial scaffolding for out of your own empathy, patience and imagination. For those who haven't got those inner resources, it's bewildering. For the rest of us, its as fun as a great book or a unexpectedly charming bar companion spinning endless yarns into the night. This is a film that separates the men from the boys. If you don't get it, then you aren't one of us.
August 18, 2013
I really enjoyed this ... Lee Marvin and Paul Newman made a great odd couple.
August 4, 2013
The problem with this film starts with the fact that Newman is about six inches shorter than Marvin, and that any shot that has them standing next to each other puts the shorter Newman upstage from Marvin. Whazzup with that?
½ February 2, 2013
Pocket Money (1972) -- [5.0] -- Paul Newman teams up with Lee Marvin to deliver cattle from Mexico to a shady dealer played by Strother Martin. Newman and Martin are re-teamed here with "Cool Hand Luke" director Stuart Rosenberg, with a script adapted by Terrence Malick (Badlands, The Thin Red Line). Despite the ingredients, "Pocket Money" doesn't amount to much. For a buddy picture, Newman and Marvin don't leave much of an impression. Marvin almost works as the boozing happy-go-lucky sort, but Newman is less convincing as a kind-hearted dim wit. Even Martin is oddly restrained here, at a time when you really just want to see him embrace a role of villainy. Maybe the problem is in the source novel or Malick's adaptation, but "Pocket Money" is slow to rev up and ends up going nowhere.
February 12, 2012
Whether you're a huge fan of both Paul Newman and Lee Marvin (as I am) or not, BOY, are you EVER in for a MAJOR disappointment.

And the fact that the legendary Terrence Malick penned the script only adds even more to the pain.

I suppose this movie was trying to be a comedy, but it's a bigger downer than a tub of sedatives.

The story, such as it is, concerns a loser, low-brow cowpoke played by Newman. He's behind on his mortgage and his alimony with his latest round-up of horses stuck in a 60 day quarantine before he can sell them.

He teams up with Lee Marvin, who gives his most comatose performance ever, (And, yes, I DID suffer through Marvin's work in "Delta Force". This is worse.) to buy some cattle for a couple of con men played by Strother Martin and Wayne Rogers (MASH's fave libertarian.)

This "story" winds up being the most boring cattle drive in movie history. You suspect that the steers themselves are asleep in half the scenes.

Bottom Line: They suspect they're going to get swindled. And they get swindled. The End. Thanks for coming, folks, and drive home safely.

Thankfully, Newman followed up this turkey with "The Sting" and Marvin followed it up with "Emperor of the North".

Proving once again, that, despite the occasional bomb, you just can't keep a great actor down. So, please see those movies instead.

In the meantime, feel free to waste your time on this picture if the names involved draw you to it. But, don't say I didn't warn you.
August 3, 2011
Odd but pleasant film written by Terrence Malick. It doesn't achieve the poetic beauty that a lot of his work as director does, but it's interesting nonetheless. Both leads give unusual performance and Stuart Rosenberg's direction, with cinematography by Laszlo Kovacs, create a nice atmosphere for this contemporary western.
April 18, 2011
W/ Paul Newman, Lee Marvin & Strother Martin the cast as well as some other noticeable faces you would figure that Pocket Money would be one of those unheard of little gems. Sadly that's not the case & it's no fault of the cast or really even director Stuart Rosenberg. It's the script. It goes absolutely no where, leads up to really nothing & leaves the viewer wondering why they even invested their time. I tried. Lord knows I tried to get involved but I was trying harder then this movie was. If you want to just watch it for some fine performances but to get anything more out of it is an exercise in futility w/ scenes sorta dropping off leaving me w/ the taste of a shit sandwich. 3 stars for the cast; 1 star for the actual film
February 27, 2011
First movie I ever saw that I walked out and said WTF was that? In '72. Still bad.
Super Reviewer
½ June 16, 2010
Great acting from Paul Newman and Lee Marvin as well as directing from Stuart Rosenberg, but this is a complete mess of a story and almost incomprehensible. It's a movie that makes you question if there was ever really a story being told at all. There's a man trying to transport horses and that's really all you can say abut the entire movie, it's difficult just to be so. I think with a better script it would've been something like Hud.
December 31, 2009
Fabulous cast and script by Terrance Malick. A great laid bad story, the kind you don't see Hollywood making anymore. One of my favorites.
½ December 17, 2009
Great cinematography, a good performance from Lee Marvin are the highlights of this modern western. It?s unusual, but it?s very bland and has way too many slow stretches. Rather talky for a western.
December 17, 2009
5.5/5.0. Great cinematography, a good performance from Lee Marvin are the highlights of this modern western. It?s unusual, but it?s very bland and has way too many slow stretches. Rather talky for a western.
½ December 11, 2009
Very slow moving modern western that's quirky with a few laughs, but it's nothing more than a lightweight buddy film. It's not really surprising to see that Terrence Malick was the screenwriter as he is sort of known for is slow paced films. Truthfully, the best part of the movie was the theme song Pocket Money by Carole King.
½ September 13, 2009
Paul Newman and Lee Marvin. One hell of a team. Directed by frequent Newman collaborater Stuart Rosenberg (of Cool Hand Luke fame). Endearing and funny.
April 20, 2009
The movie was difficult to follow. The conclusion, quite honestly, was lackluster and unclear. The cast was fairly good, however, and the movie was, at times, entertaining.

Pocket Money's plot had a lot more potential than as was shown on film. I would skip it, unless you are a Paul Newman buff or simply want to better understand his legacy.
February 5, 2009
The book was good, movie is better. Paul Newman wasn't well cast IMHO...but Lee Marvin makes up for it with one of his best roles. "In the meantime, you ain't got no dignity". Love the soundtrack and some nice cinematrophy.
½ January 31, 2009
It's not a bad story and the cast is all pretty great. The problem is it was decided at some point that this was a comedy. It's not all that funny, and the stupid shit ragtime music that blasts over the "funny" bits complete take you out of the film. The 70's where really crap for this.
January 1, 2009
Wow, one of the worst movies I have ever seen.
January 1, 2009
I'm not quite sure what the intent of this being made could've been. Pocket Money is a good title because it basically tells you why Paul Newman and Lee Marvin took this project. The story is really boring and outside of sporadic chuckle inducing scenes (that focus on the Newman characters awkwardness), the picture sorta just lies there playing on one note from beginning to end. It seems like both Newman and Marvin hated making this movie and that comes across on the final product. Could've been alot more if they hadn't settled on a first draft quality script.
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