Hot Rock [1972]

Director: Peter Yates
Stars: Robert Redford, George Segal, Ron Leibman, Paul Sand, Moses Gunn
Genre: Action, Comedy, Crime
Rating: PG (Parental Guidance Suggested)
Runtime: 101 minutes

Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid writer William Goldman and star Robert Redford re-teamed for this jaunty, lightly satiric caper comedy from 1972. Redford plays a master thief with his eye on a rare diamond. He assembles a gang of quirky fellow pros (fine character performances by Paul Sand and Ron Leibman, plus George Segal in one of his definitive, neurotic-exasperated roles from the '70s), only to find that stealing the gem is a very elusive and complicated goal. The film, set in Manhattan, was made right around the time that reports of New York City police corruption were reaching critical mass. Goldman's script and Peter Yates's direction take a broad swipe at law-enforcement culture, making it easy to be on the side of Redford's slick antihero. The Hot Rock works best as a series of set-pieces, memorable star turns (Zero Mostel is on board), and edgy exchanges between Segal and Redford. --Tom Keogh

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