Thieves Like Us (1974)


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Movie Info

Set during the 1930s, this film focuses on three escapees from a Midwestern prison camp who go on a crime spree throughout the South. The film is a remake of They Live By Night, yet it is distinguished by Robert Altman's's distinctive, detailed characterizations.

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John Schuck
as Chicamaw
Tom Skerritt
as Dee Mobley
Al Scott
as Capt. Stammers
Joan Tewkesbury
as Lady in Train Station
Edward Fisher
as Bank Hostage
Josephine Bennett
as Bank Hostage
Howard Warner
as Bank Hostage
Rodney Lee Jr.
as James Mattingly
Eleanor Matthews
as Mrs. Stammers
Pam Warner
as Woman in Accident
Suzanne Majure
as Coca-Cola Girl
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Critic Reviews for Thieves Like Us

All Critics (19) | Top Critics (7)

Robert Altman finds a sure, soft tone in this movie, from 1974, and he never loses it.

Dec 8, 2014 | Full Review…

In many ways, Thieves Like Us is Altman's best work yet, his most stringent and evocative.

May 23, 2011 | Full Review…

At times unbearably objective.

May 23, 2011 | Full Review…

Thieves Like Us proves that when Robert Altman has a solid story and script, he can make an exceptional film, one mostly devoid of clutter, auterist mannerism, and other cinema chic.

Jul 6, 2010 | Full Review…
Top Critic

Never portentous, never a mere spoof, this is a touching, intelligent, and -- in its own small way -- rather wonderful movie.

Jun 24, 2006 | Full Review…
Time Out
Top Critic

It is full of things to think about, that hang in the memory like the details of a banal crime story on page 32, which, though read quickly, won't go away. Somehow you know that this happened.

May 9, 2005 | Rating: 3.5/5 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for Thieves Like Us

A minor work for Altman but still another exceptional film in his genre experimentation period.

Graham Jones
Graham Jones

Super Reviewer


Altman does Bonnie & Clyde.

Ken Stachnik
Ken Stachnik

Super Reviewer


altman's idiosyncratic update of nicholas ray's they live by night. carradine and duvall are sweet and gawky as the doomed lovers. great soundtrack of depression era radio shows really sets the mood. a somewhat forgotten altman but i think it's every bit as good as ray's film if not better. the source novel from 1937 was inspired by the real lives of bonnie and clyde. of course, being an altman film, it's more about the characters than the plot

Stella Dallas
Stella Dallas

Super Reviewer

[font=Century Gothic]Robert Altman's problematic approach is again on full display in "Thieves Like Us" which is about three escaped convicts in 1937 Mississippi.(Well, escape is too strong a word. Strolling is more like it.) Of the three, T-Dub(Bert Remsen) and Chicamaw(John Schuck) are bankrobbers while the youngest, Bowie(Keith Carradine), was in jail for murder but has dreams of playing professional baseball. He also takes a liking to Keechie(Shelley Duvall) at a hideout while the three plan robberies.[/font] [font=Century Gothic][/font] [font=Century Gothic]"Thieves Like Us" is an exquisitely staged(the radio broadcasts are a nice touch) and very well acted movie but it does ramble on a bit. Plus, it is good that these bank robbers are not glamorized nor romanticized but considering they are working in the Deep South of the Great Depression, it is sad that politics never enter the equation.(There is a casual mention of a lynching on the radio.) And Altman's emotionally remote style does not make it easy to relate to the characters.[/font]

Walter M.
Walter M.

Super Reviewer

Thieves Like Us Quotes

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