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'''''Midnight Cowboy''''' is a 1965 novel by James Leo Herlihy, adapted into a 1969 film directed by John Schlesinger and starring Creator/JonVoight and Creator/DustinHoffman. This article deals primarily with the movie.

Joe Buck (Voight) is a dishwasher in a rural Texas diner. [[CountryMouse He's not the sharpest knife in the drawer]]. One day, he decides to dress like a rodeo cowboy and move to New York, hoping to prostitute himself to wealthy women. He burns through his savings very quickly, unable to hustle, and is taken in by Enrico "Ratso" Rizzo (Hoffman), a small-time con man with a bad leg and pneumonia. They scrape by as best they can, hoping to escape to Florida one day...

The movie garnered quite a bit of controversy upon its release, being given an [[UsefulNotes/MediaClassifications "X" rating]] by the [[MoralGuardians MPAA]]--this being when the new "X" rating was meant to signify any kind of film for adults only and was not yet associated with porn (it was reduced to an "R" the following year anyway). However, it won UsefulNotes/{{Academy Award}}s for Best Picture and Director and for Waldo Salt's adapted screenplay, and is now seen as one of the defining movies of its era.

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!!''Midnight Cowboy'' contains examples of:

* BigApplesauce
* TheBigRottenApple
* CampGay: Jackie, the swishy guy who flirts with Joe (and spars with Rizzo) at the bar.
* CoolestClubEver: The [[Creator/AndyWarhol Warholesque]] invitation-only party Joe and Rizzo attend. (Several of Warhol's "superstars" appear as extras.)
* CountryMouse: Both played straight and subverted with Joe.
* DiesWideOpen
* DisabilityAsAnExcuseForJerkassery: Played to the hilt with Rizzo.
* DontYouDarePityMe
* DownerEnding: Joe and Rizzo take a bus from New York to Miami to fulfill Rizzo's dream of living there. Not far outside Miami, Joe realizes that Rizzo has quietly died in the seat next to him. The movie ends with Joe hugging his dead friend and shedding ManlyTears as the bus continues towards Miami.
* FakeOutOpening: The film begins with a white screen and the traditional movie [[TheWestern Western]] sounds of cowboys and Indians fighting. Then the camera pulls back to reveal the blank screen of an empty DriveInTheater.
* EverybodyMustGetStoned
* TheFilmOfTheBook
* GayCowboy: Much to Joe's embarrassment, his studly cowboy persona utterly fails to win over any New York women, and only attracts men. Rizzo even flat-out tells him that only gay men like cowboys, but Joe still insists on the outfit because it makes him feel good.
* HeterosexualLifePartners: Rizzo and Joe. Though not without a fair bit of HoYay, as Rizzo has a fantasy dream sequence of the two of them running along a sunny beach together.
* HookerWithAHeartOfGold: Joe is a rare male example.
* ImagineSpot: Rizzo pictures himself and Joe living the good life in Florida.
* IncurableCoughOfDeath
* IronicNurseryTune: Joe flashes back to his grandmother singing "Hush, Little Baby" while riding the bus at night.
* {{Jerkass}}: Rizzo, a good deal of the time.
* LargeHam: O'Daniel.
* {{Leitmotif}}: ''Everybody's Talkin'", used for Joe Buck.
* TheLoinsSleepTonight: Joe experiences this with Shirley.
* MindScrew: The flashbacks to Joe Buck's past in Texas make a lot more sense if you've read [[AdaptationDisplacement the book,]] where the situations are described in depth.
* NakedInMink
* NewAgeRetroHippie
* OohMeAccentsSlipping: In the "I'm walkin' here" scene. Hoffman yells it in his real accent, before resuming his character's accent. He also stops limping briefly, despite his character having a crippled leg.
** According to Hoffman, the line was his natural reaction when a car unexpectedly ran a red light and nearly hit him while crossing the street; Hoffman said the close call prompted him to ad-lib the line in genuine surprise, but that he resumed character thereafter in an effort not to ruin the take.
* OneHeadTaller: Rizzo and Joe Buck.
* RapeAsDrama: The flashbacks of "Crazy Annie" and Joe Buck getting gang raped.
* RealSongThemeTune: Music/HarryNilsson's "Everybody's Talkin'".
* RedLightDistrict: 42nd Street, which apparently has changed quite a bit since [[Film/FortySecondStreet that movie]].
* ShoutOut: Joe Buck keeps a poster of Creator/PaulNewman as Film/{{Hud}} in his Times Square hotel room.
** During the opening credits Joe walks past a defunct movie theater advertising the Creator/JohnWayne flick ''Film/TheAlamo'' on its dilapidated marquee.
* SignatureLine: "I'm walkin' here! I'm walkin' here!"
* SlipperySoap: Dropped by Joe in the very first scene.
* SmokingHotSex: Subverted. Joe Buck and Shirley smoke out of frustration, after [[TheLoinsSleepTonight he is hit with erectile dysfunction]].
* SomethingElseAlsoRises
* TooDumbToLive: Joe Buck sure loves handing out money to people who ask.
* WelcomeToTheBigCity
* WrongSideOfTheTracks

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