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Going in Style

4.8 out of 5 stars 61 customer reviews

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(Mar 30, 2004)
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Editorial Reviews

Three senior citizens in their 70s who live together are slowly decaying in endless days with nothing to do but feed the birds. One of them comes up with an idea - rob a bank. They certainly could use the money if they get away with it and if they are caught, what could happen to three old men?

Special Features

  • "Dinah!" segment featuring Geroge Burns & Art Carney

Product Details

  • Actors: George Burns, Art Carney, Lee Strasberg, Charles Hallahan, Pamela Payton-Wright
  • Directors: Martin Brest
  • Writers: Martin Brest, Edward Cannon
  • Producers: Fred T. Gallo, Leonard Gaines, Tony Bill
  • Format: Anamorphic, Closed-captioned, Color, Subtitled, Widescreen, NTSC
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 2.0 Mono)
  • Subtitles: English, Spanish, French
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated:
    PG
    Parental Guidance Suggested
  • Studio: Warner Home Video
  • DVD Release Date: March 30, 2004
  • Run Time: 97 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (61 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00013WVKI
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #94,012 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Going in Style" on IMDb

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: VHS Tape
Pretty much overlooked when it came out in 1979, this film is a rare gem. George Burns, Art Carney and Lee Strasberg play three retirees sharing a house in Queens. Bored and bitter, Joe (Burns) talks Al and Willie (Carney and Strasberg) into going in on a bank robbery. The three get a real buzz out of pulling off the job, the only excitement they've had in years. But what seems to have been the perfect crime soon begins to have tragic consequences. When Willie dies from a heart attack, Joe and Al take off for Vegas where they wind up getting into a once in a lifetime crap game. This excursion then takes on tragic consequences of its own, leading up to a bittersweet ending. While all three of the leads are terrific, it is really Burns who carries the film. I believe this to be his best film work. For those who have always felt that a little bit of George goes a long way, you should check this film out to see what a truly remarkable acting talent he could be when given the material. His work here is totally devoid of the "cuteness" that marked a lot of the films he was in such as "Oh, God!" A truly Oscar-worthy performance. One wonders what the atmosphere on the set must have been like with Burns and Carney, two masters of schtick, and Strasberg, the father of modern method acting. Whatever the chemistry, it definitely shows up on screen.
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Format: DVD
A trio of elderly retirees (George Burns, Art Carney, and Lee Strasberg), who live together in a New York apartment, decide to escape the deadly tedium of their waning years by robbing a bank. They complete the job successfully, but find that life goes on and a little bit of cash doesn't change everything. Director/writer Martin Brest and his talented cast avoid the easy road of aiming for a riotous comedy about some cute old men who break the law. These are fully developed characters, and there are some moments of powerful acting as the story takes these men to some very dark places. Those who think of Burns and Carney as the epitome of old-time jokey vaudeville-style humor may be surprised by their understated and effective performances. Of course, Strasberg, the father of method acting, is reliably superb. There is real joy in this film as well. The scenes in which the three old friends seem to come alive again during a day spent in the city preparing for their bank job and a later one in Las Vegas are wonderful and feature very good acting. Recommended./
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Format: DVD Verified Purchase
THE STORY: Three elderly retirees sharing an apartment spend their days doing the same old same old. Tired of the routine, one of them comes up with a plan to alleviate their boredom: rob a bank! If they succeed they'll have a blast doing something different, dangerous and exciting, plus more money to spend in their golden years than they could have ever imagined. If they're caught, they'll simply spend a few years in jail (three meals & a clean place to sleep), and when they're released each will have a tidy amount waiting for them in the form of a stack of un-cashed Social Security paychecks, accrued during their incarceration. A "win-win" so to speak. They agree, and the adventure begins. What happens along the way is something truly moving and genuinely magical for movie fans.

THOUGHTS: One of the best movies with a focus on older folks EVER made. Period. Every actor gets his opportunity to shine and they all do, with gusto. This is, without a doubt, George Burns at his absolute best as an actor. He simply IS the heart of this movie. He is by turns sympathetic, bitter, confused, remorseful, angry, delighted, ashamed, self-loathing and of course, always cantankerous. He's just pitch-perfect here. And relatively new at the time actor Charles Hallahan really shines as Pete, the nephew of Art Carney's delightfully loveable teddy bear character, Al. You knew that Hallahan had good things ahead of him with his wonderful turn in a small, but memorable part. Art Carney is a joy, stealing every scene he's in. The Vegas crap table scene is pure movie magic with two old pros just having an absolute blast and they are a joy to watch together.
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By Jim on March 4, 2005
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
A very touching comedy/drama with three men looking to find some excitement in their idle twilight years. Just wish a soundtrack would have been put out as the music is fabulous.
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Format: Amazon Video Verified Purchase
Wonderfully acted, bittersweet tale of three lonely, sad (but funny) old men - brilliantly played by George Burns, Art Carney and Lee Strasberg - who have nothing much left to do in their lives except to sit on a park bench and try to stretch their social security checks to get by week to week. Then one of them has an idea. Why not spice up our life and rob a bank? What’s the worst that can happen? We’ll go to jail, which is pretty much what our life is already.

Always entertaining, sometimes heartbreaking, and some strong social commentary on how our society discards our elderly to the junk heap instead of mining them for the treasures of their wit, experience and insight. There are minor problems, some stretches of logic and so forth, but not enough to undermine a lovely, honest, rueful and bittersweet comedy/drama.
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