Harry and Tonto
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|Harry and Tonto|
|Directed by||Paul Mazursky|
|Produced by||Paul Mazursky|
|Written by||Paul Mazursky
Chief Dan George
|Music by||Bill Conti|
|Cinematography||Michael C. Butler|
|Editing by||Richard Halsey|
|Studio||Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation|
|Distributed by||Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation|
|Release date(s)||August 12, 1974|
|Running time||115 minutes|
|Box office||$4.6 million (rentals)|
Harry Coombes (Art Carney) is an elderly widower who is forced from his Upper West Side apartment in New York City when his building is condemned. He initially stays with his son's family in the suburbs but eventually chooses to travel cross country with his pet cat "Tonto" in tow. Initially planning to fly to Chicago, he instead boards a long-distance bus, then later impulsively buys a used car to continue the journey. During his episodic journey, he befriends a Bible-quoting hitchhiker (Michael Butler), travels with underage runaway Ginger (Melanie Mayron), visits his daughter (Ellen Burstyn), a bookstore owner in Chicago, and drops in on an early sweetheart in a retirement home who suffers from dementia. Later he accepts a ride with a health-food salesman, spends a night in jail with a friendly Native Indian chief, and meets his youngest son (Larry Hagman) in Las Vegas. Finally, he goes to Los Angeles, where he settles down, begins tutoring children and is invited to room with a friendly widow.
- Art Carney as Harry Coombes
- Herbert Berghof as Jacob Rivetowski
- Ellen Burstyn as Shirley Mallard
- Geraldine Fitzgerald as Jessie Stone
- Larry Hagman as Eddie Coombes
- Chief Dan George as Sam Two Feathers
- Melanie Mayron as Ginger
- Joshua Mostel as Norman Coombes
- Arthur Hunnicutt as Wade Carlton
- Barbara Rhoades as Stephanie, Hooker
- Cliff DeYoung as Burt Coombes Jr.
- Phil Bruns as Burt Coombes
- Dolly Jonah as Elaine Coombes
- Avon Long as Leroy
- Louis Guss as Dominic Santosi
- Cliff Norton as Nick Lewis, Used Car Dealer
- Rashel Novikoff as Mrs. Rothman
- Michael Butler as Hitchhiker
- René Enríquez as Jesús, Deli Manager
- Michael McCleery as Mugger
Also appearing toward the end of the film as Celia is Sally K. Marr, mother of Lenny Bruce.
Awards and nominations 
Carney beat Albert Finney, Dustin Hoffman, Jack Nicholson and Al Pacino, for their performances in Murder on the Orient Express, Lenny, Chinatown and The Godfather Part II respectively, for the 1974 Academy Award for Best Actor. The film was nominated for Best Writing, Original Screenplay.
Carney also won the Golden Globe for Best Actor Musical/Comedy, while Greenfeld and Mazursky were nominated for Best Picture Musical/Comedy. The screenplay was nominated for the Writers Guild of America Award as Best Drama Written Directly for the Screen. The film was also selected as one of the ten best of 1974 by the National Board of Review.
At the time, Carney noted that prior to his work in Harry and Tonto, he "never liked cats" but said he wound up getting along well with the cat in the film.
- Harry and Tonto at the Internet Movie Database
- Harry and Tonto at AllRovi
- Harry and Tonto at Rotten Tomatoes