Harry and Walter Go to New York
|Harry and Walter Go to New York|
|Directed by||Mark Rydell|
|Produced by||Don Devlin|
|Written by||John Byrum, Robert Kaufman, Don Devlin|
|Music by||David Shire|
|Edited by||David Bretherton
|Distributed by||Columbia Pictures|
|June 17, 1976|
Harry and Walter Go to New York is a 1976 American period comedy film written by John Byrum and Robert Kaufman, directed by Mark Rydell, and starring James Caan, Elliott Gould, Michael Caine, Diane Keaton, Charles Durning and Lesley Ann Warren. In the film, two down-on-their-luck con men try to pull off the biggest heist ever seen in late nineteenth century New York. They are opposed by the greatest bank robber of the day, and by a crusading newspaper editor.
Harry Dighby (Caan) and Walter Hill (Gould) are struggling vaudevillians who are sent to jail when Dighby is caught robbing audience members. They become roommates to a cultured, wealthy, and charming bank robber named Adam Worth (Caine). Worth plans to rob the Lowell Bank and Trust, both to avenge himself on the bank manager who had arranged his capture and because his ego cannot resist the temptation of robbing a bank reputed to be perfectly secure. Though in jail, he procures detailed diagrams of the bank's security systems.
A reforming newspaperwoman named Lissa Chestnut (Keaton) visits their cell. During her visit Dighby and Hill manage to photograph the bank plans with her camera, then burn the originals. They break out of prison the next day at the same time as Worth is paroled. They meet in New York City; and, by force, Worth manages to extract a copy of the photographed plans from them. Dighby, Hill, and Chestnut then band with Chestnut's team of do-gooders to race against Worth and his professional bank robbing squad to see who can rob the Lowell Bank and Trust first.
- James Caan - Harry Dighby
- Elliott Gould - Walter Hill
- Michael Caine - Adam Worth
- Diane Keaton - Lissa Chestnut
- Charles Durning - Rufus T. Crisp
- Lesley Ann Warren - Gloria Fontaine
- Burt Young - Warden Durgom
- Kathryn Grody - Barbara
The film received mixed reviews from critics.
James Caan later dubbed the film "Harry and Walter Go to the Toilet" and sacked his management after making the movie. "The director sacrificed jokes to tell a story no one cared about," he said.
- Vincent Canby (June 18, 1976). "Harry and Walter Go to New York (1976)". The New York Times. Retrieved March 28, 2015.
- Harry and Walter Go to New York Retrieved August 27, 2008.
- James Caan's career hitting tough times Siskel, Gene. Chicago Tribune (1963-Current file) [Chicago, Ill] 27 Nov 1977: e6.
- FILM CLIPS: Tony Bill's Open Door Policy Lee, Grant. Los Angeles Times (1923-Current File) [Los Angeles, Calif] 28 May 1977: b6