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Hot Rock, The

4.3 out of 5 stars 61 customer reviews

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(May 20, 2003)
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Editorial Reviews

Product Description



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

Special Features


Product Details

  • Actors: Robert Redford, George Segal, Ron Leibman, Paul Sand, Moses Gunn
  • Directors: Peter Yates
  • Writers: Donald E. Westlake, William Goldman
  • Producers: Bobby Roberts, Hal Landers
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Anamorphic, Closed-captioned, Color, NTSC, Widescreen
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 1.0), English (Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo), French (Dolby Digital 1.0), Spanish (Dolby Digital 1.0)
  • Subtitles: English, Spanish
  • Dubbed: French
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 2.35:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated:
    Parental Guidance Suggested
  • Studio: 20th Century Fox
  • DVD Release Date: May 20, 2003
  • Run Time: 101 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (61 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00008MTW1
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #15,404 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Hot Rock, The" on IMDb

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Barry Smith on April 9, 2005
Format: DVD
Another five star review? Well I usually review just my all-time favorites and since I am reviewing this I can say THE HOT ROCK is one of my favorite movies of all time, even if Robert Redford didn't think so. You see, I've read that Redford never had much regard for this film, which might be considered as a minor or lesser effort. In fact he was against having this film released in DVD format. Apparently that request slipped through his fingers as it's available on DVD now.

This might seem to some as a pleasant but unspectacutar Saturday afternoon or 3:00 AM tv movie. It's basically a light comedy with likeable heroes and villains. Nobody gets hurt or dies. There's no bad language or nudity (I like that!!). However, the plot is actually complex and interesting. The plot revolves around the stealing and recovery of the Sahara Stone from the Brooklyn Museum. This priceless diamond is stolen by Robert Redford and his gang through elaborate scheming. Although Redford was in prison and he loses the diamond during the course of the film, his character always seems to be wise. We know that he will succeed in regaining the stone before the end. However, the final twist, which I shall not reveal, is a great touch, and keeps the viewer interested and on the edge of his/her seat.

One other thing I like about this film is that it was shot on location in New York City and Long Island in May/June 1971.

I live here, so I recognize many of the locations. For example, the "State Prison" is actually Nassau County Jail (there is actually no state prison on Long Island). The outside of the Jail where George Segal meets Robert Redford is right on Carmans Avenue in East Meadow.
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Format: DVD
The Hot Rock is a favorite movie of mine that brings back warm memories of my childhood. I loved this movie especially the scene when Dortmunder confronts Murch about not knowing how to fly the helicopter and Murch starts flipping switches, gets it started and takes off. My brothers and I used Murch's line "flip this here, hit this one, this one and this one, then double it over, hit your battery, then your starter and come on baby, come baby--Ha-ha-ha!" all the time when growing up and building cars. It is a classic film set in NYC that all will enjoy and one that goes down as my all time favorite.
My mother (A big Robert Redford fan) would always let me know when it was coming on TV so I could watch it again and again. She said I reminded here of Murch as I could fix or drive anything mechanical and get any engine to start. She recently brought me the DVD for my 40th birthday and I watch it at least once a month.
Redford and his enjoyable cast are funny and very entertaining. It's a great heist film and one that makes you want them to get away with the jewel.
Other great scenes in the film I liked: When "Chicken" pretended to throw Greenberg down the elevator shaft and Abe gets busted for lying about the stone, and when Redford coolly strolls into the back on his last attempt at the diamond. There is also some great close up shots of the World Trade Center while it was under construction. You can actually see thru the building on a fly by.
In a day when many movies are packed with violence and harsh language, this film will bring all whom watch it back to a time when great films were made that could stand on their own without brutality and curse words every other line.
This movie is a classic and I would recommend it to all viewers. I would also love to see (and be involved in any way possible) a remake of this film set here in New Orleans!!!
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Format: DVD
I wouldn't say this of a comedy often but... sometimes when you watch them again (and even again), and you notice they keep getting funnier, you know you have a good one. You know that someone's crafted something different. Special. The Hot Rock falls into that category (if there is one).

Redford reteams with William Goldman (who wrote Butch & The Kid). It's a caper film and with a team of characters with names like Dortmunder/Kelp/Greenberg and Murch, you're already in trouble.

The casting is perfect. George Segal, Paul Sands and Ron Liebman round out Redford's team- and they are all priceless. Moses Gunn and Zero Mostel are excellent in their supporting roles.

What I personally think makes this comedy wonderful is, it's written by and American and starring Americans but it's directed by a Brit (Peter Yates). Goldman supplies the lines and I think Yates looked for character traits and the subtle little screw ups in the scenes where they're trying to advance the cause or steal the stone. ie: Murch (with his love of cars), playing a record of the Indy car race on his stereo for his Mom, cracking a beer and they're both in heaven, listening, while in the background- they live right next to the freeway and no one else (who is normal) would be able to hear or notice the difference! " Turn the treble up, Stan! " Funny stuff!

Moses Gunn's face is priceless as they repeatedly hand him the material request needs list, each time they fail. " Will it upset me? " " Yes, " Segal replies, straight faced. " I think it's safe to say so, sir. "

And watch for the priceless sight gag Mostel makes, introducing himself as the lawyer.

It's a film about Murphy's Law and just how funny it can be. We all experience it from time to time, in each of our lives.
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