Midnight Cowboy (#925)

Type: New Blu-Ray

One of the British New Wave’s most versatile directors, John Schlesinger came to New York in the late 1960s to make Midnight Cowboy, a picaresque story of friendship that captured a city in crisis and sparked a new era of Hollywood movies. Jon Voight delivers a career-making performance as Joe Buck, a wide-eyed hustler from Texas hoping to score big with wealthy city women; he finds a companion in Enrico “Ratso” Rizzo, an ailing swindler with a bum leg and a quixotic fantasy of escaping to Florida, played by Dustin Hoffman in a radical departure from his breakthrough in The Graduate. A critical and commercial success despite controversy over what the MPAA termed its “homosexual frame of reference,” Midnight Cowboy became the first X-rated film to receive the best picture Oscar, and decades on, its influence still reverberates through cinema.


New 4K digital restoration, approved by cinematographer Adam Holender, with uncompressed monaural soundtrack on the Blu-ray

Alternate 5.1 surround DTS-HD Master Audio soundtrack

Audio commentary from 1991 featuring director John Schlesinger and producer Jerome Hellman

New video essay with commentary by Holender

New photo gallery with commentary by photographer Michael Childers

The Crowd Around the Cowboy, a 1969 short film made on location for Midnight Cowboy

Waldo Salt: A Screenwriter’s Journey, an Academy Award–nominated documentary from 1990 by Eugene Corr and Robert Hillmann

Two short documentaries from 2004 on the making and release of Midnight Cowboy

Interview with actor Jon Voight on The David Frost Show from 1970

Voight’s original screen test

Interview from 2000 with Schlesinger for BAFTA Los Angeles

Excerpts from the 2002 BAFTA Los Angeles tribute to Schlesinger


English subtitles for the deaf and hard of hearing

PLUS: An essay by critic Mark Harris