Joliet banker and racketeer Doyle Lonnegan (Robert
Shaw) is tricked out of a large sum of money by con artist Johnny
Hooker (Robert Redford) and his partner (Robert Earl Jones), but when
his accomplice is murdered, Hooker swears revenge. He contacts Jones'
friend Henry Gondorff (Paul Newman), a master con man in Chicago now
down on his luck. Gondorff puts a plan into operation in which he
beats Lonnegan at poker during a game on a train, using Hooker to
lure Lonnegan to his phony Chicago betting parlor. Hooker is
constantly hounded by crooked Chicago Police Lieutenant William
Snyder (Charles Durning) and the last act involves one last con that
no one predicts!
A lot of the movie takes place in Chicago, so
there's one shots of, scenes on and discussion of the "L". Below are
a selection of QuickTime movie clips, sound files and pictures from
the film. Below that, there's a list of random facts about the
(All clips and pictures are © 1973
Lieutenant Snyder chases Hooker by car beneath the
Hooker runs down the alley, next to the 43rd Street
Hooker turns and enters the 43rd Street
Hooker runs inside the 43rd Street station to evade Lt.
Hooker jumps the turnstile and runs up the stairs to the
Hooker runs onto the 43rd Street "L"
Hooker runs down the platform.
Hooker realizes he's trapped on the
...chased by Lieutenant Snyder...
...so he climbs onto the canopy roof and runs the other
Hooker leaps off the canopy to the street
... and eludes Lieutenant Snyder, who's stuck up on the
An establishing shot of Chicago, with the "L" in
Outside the hotel, the "L" runs down the adjacent
At night, Hooker strolls by the "L".
A train passes by the hotel on the "L".
Facts about the movie
- As would be expected, a number of problems
seem to crop up here in terms of historical accuracy, e.g. using
the 1970s city to portray the 1930s. One occurs in some of the
establishing shots of the hotel in which an elevated line is seen
down the middle of a street. The engineering and paint job of the
structure doesn't seem to match any part of Chicago, indicating
that these shots may have been filmed in New York.
- While the 43rd
Street "L" station that Hooker runs
into does date back to the 1890s, a number of changes that had
been made by 1973 and are seen had not yet been done in the 1930s.
First, the exterior seems to have been painted white, but it is
far more likely that it still would have been natural brick during
the Depression. Also, white A/B signs are seen on the platform,
but these weren't installed until the 1950s.
- A Chicago Motor Coach bus can been seen in the
street outside the diner window.