The Outsiders (1983) Instant download at Amazon
The Outsiders is a drama film directed by Francis Ford Coppola and it came out in theatres in 1983. The film would be a platform for many up and coming stars from the 1980’s. It stars C. Thomas Howell, Rob Lowe, Emilio Estevez, Matt Dillon, Tom Cruise, Patrick Swayze, Ralph Macchio, and Diane Lane. In supporting roles are Leif Garret and Tom Waits. The Outsiders was also a novel by S.E. Hinton. Matt Dillon and Diane Lane would re-team with Francis Ford Coppola for “Rumble Fish”. The Outsiders is 91 minutes long.
The Outsiders takes place in the early 1960’s in Tulsa, Oklahoma. It is centered on two groups of teenagers/young adults, the Greasers (Poor White Trash Tough Boys) and the Socs (Preps). The Greasers include Ponyboy Curtis (C. Thomas Howell) and his two older brothers, Sodapop (Rob Lowe) and Darrel (Patrick Swayze), as well as Johnny Cade (Ralph Macchio), Dallas Winston (Matt Dillon), Two-Bit Matthews (Emilio Estevez), and Steve Randle (Tom Cruise). Their rivalry with the Socs is escalated when Ponyboy, Johnny, Two-Bit, and Dallas Winston are talking to Bob Sheldon (Leif Garrett) and Randy Anderson (Darren Dalton) girlfriends at the Drive-In movie theatre.
The two Socs confront the three greasers and before a total fight breaks out the two girlfriends of the Socs, Cherry Valance (Diane Lane) and Marcia (Michelle Meyrink) agree to leave with their boyfriends Bob and Randy. Later on that night Bob, Randy, and a couple of other Socs viciously attack Ponyboy and Johnny in the park. To save Ponyboy’s life, who was having his head dunked in the water by Bob, Johnny pulls out a switchblade knife and kills Bob. The other Socs run off scared. Dallas Winston warns Ponyboy and Johnny that they should leave town. Taking Dallas Winston’s advice the two boys retreat to an abandoned church in a made up town called Windrixville. Dallas soon arrives and tells the two boys that Cherry is willing to back up the boys in court.
The three greasers leave to go get some food. On their return back, they notice the church has caught fire with school children inside. Johnny is severely burned and suffers a broken back when he, Dallas, and Ponyboy rescue the kids. Even though the rescue of the children was an honorable act, Johnny who is in the hospital near death, is charged for manslaughter for killing Bob Sheldon. Ponyboy is informed he may be sent to a home for troubled teens. The Socs who are angry about the Bob Sheldon’s murder engage in a “Rumble” (Big Gang Fight), with all the Greasers in the town. The Greasers who were motivated by Johnny’s critical condition eventually win the Rumble. When Dallas Winston and Ponyboy visit Johnny in the hospital after the victory, Johnny with his dying breath quotes a Robert Frost Poem, and tells Ponyboy to “Stay Gold”.
Dallas Winston unable to cope with Johnny’s death loses it and robs a local store at gunpoint, chased down, and is killed by the Police. Ponyboy is cleared of all charges and is allowed to stay with his older brothers, Darrel Curtis and Sodapop Curtis. The film ends with Ponyboy reading a letter that Johnny left him before he died and writing a school report about what transpired.
The Outsiders: The Review
The Outsiders would be the film that launched several of these actors into super stardom and they would remain in the spotlight in years to come. It also would be the last notable thing that 1970’s Teen Idol Leif Garrett would do before his career spiraled down into a life of drug abuse and bad b-movies. The Outsiders is a really special movie from the 1980’s, it is perfectly written and all the actors involved do an amazing job. The film is a tribute to the beauty of youth, innocence, colliding worlds, and also the loss of innocence. The film would inspire to create the “Brat Pack”, which some of these actors would be part of in the films they would do together in succession. The “Nothing Can Stay Gold”, sunrise scene with Johnny & Ponyboy is really beautiful and a highlight of the films excellent cinematography.
Ralph Macchio, who is notorious for looking a lot younger than his real age, really does a great job as the unconfident, timid, and fidgeting scared boy in the film. C. Thomas Howell, who was also very baby -faced in this film, did a solid interpretation of his character in the film. I would consider this his best film. He never really had much success after this. He did another successful film called “Red Dawn”, but from what I read, his movie career fizzled out because he looked so young throughout the 1980’s. It was hard for him to be taken seriously in an adult role. He won a Best Young Motion Picture Actor award for The Outsiders film. Emilio Estevez as Two-Bit Matthews was entertaining. He did a great job with his buffoonish character. His trademark laugh makes it even better, lol. Diane Lane in this film was radiant, and still is at her current age. She has always been a very beautiful woman. She was 18 in The Outsiders. She did another film with Matt Dillon as I noted in the beginning of this review. I believe she used to date him around this time.
Matt Dillon was my favorite actor in this film. I always liked Dallas Winston the best out of all The Outsiders. Matt Dillon was awesome with his early career, trademark caveman brute type role in this film. Dallas Winston also has the best lines in the film, “are you a real redhead”, and “Let’s do it for Johnny”. I love how he sounds and walks in this film. He struts around in this film like he owns the place. Leif Garrett is somewhat unconvincing as a bully in this film, because of his whiny lame voice. I just couldn’t take him seriously as someone to be intimidated by.
The other actors in the brief time they were in the film were solid with their roles. As a youngster I used to get really emotional with Johnny’s death scene and the killing of Dallas Winston by the police. I always cry when I watch those two scenes. They are very depressing. The gloomy music that plays in the background when Dallas is being chased down and eventually shot makes it even worse. The young man is distraught over his friend’s death, and he was only bluffing when he pulls out the gun, and then is shot by the police.
I love the scene in the beginning with Dallas, Johnny, and Ponyboy strutting down the streets like they own it, while Van Morison’s very cool song “Gloria” is playing. The extremely beautiful song “Stay Gold” by Stevie Wonder will bring the emotions out of you. Tom Waits makes a cameo in this film in the bar that Dallas Winston hangs out at. The Outsiders was made into an unsuccessful TV series in 1990. I may have watched a few episodes of it but I don’t recall anything from it on whether it was good or not. David Arquette and Billy Bob Thornton were in it as Two-Bit Matthews and Buck Merrill. This is my review of this film after not watching it for several years and it has stood the test of time to still be a very great film to watch. As for me I need an upgrade of my DVD, which is the version when DVD’s first came out on the market. I hope to get a Blu-Ray version soon. I suggest to you all to check out Rumble Fish. It also is a great film in its own right. The Outsiders possibly has the greatest film casting ever.
The Outsiders 1983 Film Review: Done by Rancel
The Outsiders Some Scenes with (Van Morrison’s song Gloria)
The Outsiders Trailer
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