5.9/10
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The Big Town (1987)

It is 1957. J.C. Cullen is a young man from a small town, with a talent for winning at craps, who leaves for the big city to work as a professional gambler. While there, he breaks the bank ... See full summary »

Directors:

Ben Bolt, Harold Becker (uncredited)

Writers:

Clark Howard (novel), Robert Roy Pool (screenplay)
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Matt Dillon ... J.C. Cullen
Diane Lane ... Lorry Dane
Tommy Lee Jones ... George Cole
Bruce Dern ... Mr. Edwards
Lee Grant ... Ferguson Edwards
Tom Skerritt ... Phil Carpenter
Suzy Amis ... Aggie Donaldson
David Marshall Grant ... Sonny Binkley
Don Francks ... Carl Hooker
Del Close ... Deacon Daniels
Meg Hogarth ... Dorothy Cullen
Cherry Jones ... Ginger McDonald
Alvaro D'Antonio Alvaro D'Antonio ... Prager (as Mark Danton)
David James Elliott ... Cool Guy (as David Elliott)
Steve Yorke Steve Yorke ... Garage Boy
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Storyline

It is 1957. J.C. Cullen is a young man from a small town, with a talent for winning at craps, who leaves for the big city to work as a professional gambler. While there, he breaks the bank at a private craps game at the Gem Club, owned by George Cole, and falls in love with two women, one of them Cole's wife. Infuriated, Cole wagers everything on the craps table, including the Gem Club itself, and he and Cullen have it out. Written by Brian C. Madsen <bcmmovies@earthlink.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Lady luck is always on his side. Tonight, she's on fire. See more »


Certificate:

R | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

25 September 1987 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Arm See more »

Filming Locations:

Chicago, Illinois, USA See more »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$776,675, 27 September 1987

Gross USA:

$1,733,017

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$1,733,017
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Stereo

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Third collaboration between Matt Dillon and Diane Lane since working on The Outsiders (1983) and Rumble Fish (1983). See more »

Goofs

J.C. buys into the craps game with $500 ("5 C's to the pass"), but the closeup shot shows 4 $100 bills on the table. See more »

Quotes

George Cole: Cullen, you're gonna pay for this!
See more »

Connections

Referenced in The Cage (1989) See more »

Soundtracks

C.C. RIDER
Written by Chuck Willis
Performed by Chuck Willis
Courtesy of Atlantic Recording Corp.
By Arrangement with Warner Special Products
See more »

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User Reviews

An undiscovered gem about gambling, sex, and growing up in a tough world
6 April 2000 | by pool2000See all my reviews

This is Matt Dillon's best performance by far. This shows why everyone thinks he has such talent. But like most of his other work, this movie is dark and realistic about human nature -- in a word, truthful. All the characters have at least two levels -- the superficial level, and a deeper level which is usually darker and more warped, yet never exaggerated. This film also features a masterful performance by Tommy Lee Jones, an excellent job by Suzy Amis, and Diane Lane's most sensational, most lurid, and deepest performance ever in her depiction of a scheming strip tease queen, the ultimate femme fatale, yet a tortured little girl underneath.

The script is very good, very insightful, very restrained in its depiction of a lurid underworld of raw emotion. It dramatizes a world of sin and depravity, yet the story is at core a morality play in which decency and morality not only survive but thrive in spite of extreme temptations.

A good movie on every level.


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