Lookin' to Get Out


1h 44m 1982

Brief Synopsis

Alex Kovas lost $10,000 to thugs Joey and Harry in New York City during a poker game. Unable to pay up, Alex hits the road with his friend Jerry Feldman, and the two go to Las Vegas in the hope of winning big. In fact, they do get lucky in the casino, but when word of this gets back to New York, Joey and Harry head for Vegas.

Film Details

MPAA Rating
R
Genre
Comedy
Release Date
1982

Technical Specs

Duration
1h 44m

Synopsis

Alex Kovas lost $10,000 to thugs Joey and Harry in New York City during a poker game. Unable to pay up, Alex hits the road with his friend Jerry Feldman, and the two go to Las Vegas in the hope of winning big. In fact, they do get lucky in the casino, but when word of this gets back to New York, Joey and Harry head for Vegas.

Crew

Bobby Bass

Stunts

Paul Borchardt

Key Grip

Robert Boyle

Production Designer

Tommie Lee Bradley

Song Performer

Andrew Braunsberg

Executive Producer

Jophery Brown

Stunts

Fletcher Bryant

Stunts

Buzz Bundy

Stunts

Mark Burger

Song Performer

Bill Burton

Stunts

Steve Chambers

Stunts

Tom Costich

Wardrobe

Bob Dawn

Makeup

Tom Dawson

Wardrobe

Ray De La Motte

Camera Operator

Paul Delph

Song Performer

George Doering

Song

Jo Ellen Doering

Song

Walton Dornisch

Editor

Richard Miller Ellis

Stunts

David Friedman

Photography

George Gaines

Set Decorator

Eva Gardos

Editor

Albert N Gaynor

Scenic Artist

Lucy Goldsnow

Sound Editor

Miles Goodman

Music

Janice Hampton

Editor

James Herbert

Location Manager

Donald High

Set Designer

Bill Hank Hooker

Stunts

Buddy Joe Hooker

Stunt Coordinator

Robert C. Jones

Editor

Kenneth Karman

Music Editor

Robert Knudson

Sound

Mireille Machu

Assistant Editor

Johnny Mandel

Music

Johnny Mandel

Song

Lee Marshall

Production Assistant

Kathleen Mcgregor

Wardrobe

Paul Moen

Assistant Director

Charles Moran

Sound Editor

Charles Myers

Assistant Director

David Palmer

Song Performer

Andrew G Patterson

Sound Editor

Diane Pepper

Hair

Paul Bruce Richardson

Sound Editor

Christopher Rouse

Assistant Editor

Robert Schaffel

Producer

James Schoppe

Art Director

Arthur B Shippee

Props

Linda Sony

Production Coordinator

Lynn Stalmaster

Casting

Ron Stein

Stunts

Chip Taylor

Consultant

Edward Teets

Production Manager

Edward Teets

Associate Producer

Steve Traxler

Production Assistant

Cynnie Troup

Script Supervisor

Janell Twomey

Stunts

Sandy Veneziano

Set Designer

Jon Voight

Producer

Jon Voight

Screenplay

Wayne Wahrman

Editor

Haskell Wexler

Director Of Photography

Jeffrey S Wexler

Sound

Walter Wyatt

Stunts

Melissa Wye

Assistant Editor

Film Details

MPAA Rating
R
Genre
Comedy
Release Date
1982

Technical Specs

Duration
1h 44m

Articles

Lookin' to Get Out - Hal Ashby's LOOKIN' TO GET OUT - The Extended Version on DVD


1982's Lookin' to Get Out is back in an entirely new version, thanks to the intervention of its star Jon Voight. The original release garnered "disappointing" reviews and did very little business, seriously damaging the career of Hal Ashby. The director of the cult hit Harold and Maude became a casualty of a film culture that abandoned 70s experimentation in favor of the Spielberg-Lucas brand of traditional escapism.

Ex- editor Hal Ashby was fresh from the prestige successes Shampoo, Coming Home and Being There. If you count critical hits, he was one of the most successful of the 70s directors. His Lookin' to Get Out is a hyper comedy thriller about gambling and irresponsibility. Alex Kovac and Jerry Feldman (Jon Voight & Burt Young) are New York gamblers with a talent for turning success into disaster. Flush from a big win, Alex blows it all in a card game with some local hoods. The boys flee to Las Vegas in an unlikely scheme to make up their losses. The irrationally optimistic Alex takes things to the brink by accepting a complimentary booking into the MGM Grand's "Dr. Zhivago Suite" -- the check-in clerk mistakes Jerry for a close associate of hotel owner Bernie Gold (Richard Bradford). Alex digs up ex- master gambler Smitty (the hilarious Burt Remsen), and using money advanced by the hotel, stakes him to a wild game of blackjack. Meanwhile, Jon's other past catches up with him as well. Gold's present girlfriend Patti Warner (Ann-Margret) wants to see if Jon has reformed -- and to introduce him to the four year-old daughter he's never met.

The behind-the-scenes battles on Lookin' to Get Out were being publicized long before its release. When Ashby moved on, Lorimar cut the film without his input, and the film as released represented little of the director's original intention. Made at a time when production costs were ballooning, Lookin' cost $17 million and didn't even clear the $1 million mark at the box office. After the debacle of Heaven's Gate, the film became another "proof" that Hollywood needed to reign in the power of film directors.

Twenty-five years later, Ashby biographer Nick Dawson told Lookin' star and co-writer Jon Voight about a longer cut of the film donated to the UCLA Film Archive for safekeeping. This "Extended Version" is a full fifteen minutes longer. The extra footage adds more than character scenes and detail; it's an alternate editorial version all the way through. Jon Voight: "Cut for cut it's a different picture. Every scene has been played with."

In the shorter 1982 version Jon Voight's Alex comes across as destructive and unlikable, a guy who always seems to be shouting and making a scene. The new in-between material gives Alex more of a human balance, and includes sentimental notes missing in the original cut. With the emphasis on character touches restored, the film seems less hectic and cartoonish. Lookin' to Get Out is still the randy adventures of a couple of ambitious lowlifes, but the new cut turns the film around by restoring its oddball pacing. The same manic climaxes are there, with the key difference that we now care what happens to the foolhardy heroes.

Ashby's film is now a genuine Screwball comedy. Dreamer Alex Kovac believes he can find a way out of any crisis, even when gangsters have threatened to kill him. He plays every situation to the brink, luxuriating in a suite meant for an Arab prince while betting his life that the craggy old Smitty -- who has a serious heart condition -- can prevail at the blackjack table. Jerry Feldman is Alex's slower-thinking sidekick, in over his head and wondering if he should pull Alex back before both of their necks are chopped off. Jerry makes a pass at Patti, not realizing that she's just peeking in to see if Alex has matured any in the past few years. When Patti sees that the opposite is the case, she does what she can to protect her ex- boyfriend from the wrath of the Las Vegas establishment. Things come to a head during the crucial blackjack game, when the New York thugs and the hotel owner converge simultaneously on our foolhardy heroes.

Had this version of Lookin' to Get Out been released in 1982, it could have been a special event in Hal Ashby's filmography. In this looser cut, it's a more commercial proposition than Robert Altman's California Split, another story of compulsive gamblers. Warners' new release will hopefully redeem Lookin's filmic reputation.

The Extended Cut restores the very first performance of Angelina Jolie. The four year-old Jolie is very recognizably herself in a brief but cute reunion scene with Alex Kovac. It's too bad that Warners missed a Father's Day release date for the new DVD, as the father-daughter sparks between Jolie and Voight give Lookin' to Get Out an added kick of nostalgia.

Warner Home Entertainment's Extended Cut DVD release of Lookin' to Get Out is a transfer of Hal Ashby's one-of-a-kind archived print, and therefore is a few clicks below transfer perfection. Only by looking at the original trailer do we see that Haskell Wexler's original cinematography was slightly richer and sharper. The new version has nothing to hide.

Laurent Bouzereau's new featurette The Cast Looks Back investigates the Lookin' experience through interviews with Jon Voight, Burt Young and Ann-Margret. Co-screenwriter Al Schwartz recalls dreaming up the story idea on a Las Vegas bender with actor Joe Turkel. All share their memories of Ashby, and praise the work of cinematographer Wexler and the legendary production designer Robert Boyle. The featurette ends with some funny on-camera exchanges between Voight and Ann-Margret, who jokingly corrects Voight on her name.

For more information about Lookin' to Get Out, visit Warner Video. To order Lookin' to Get Out, go to TCM Shopping.

by Glenn Erickson
Lookin' To Get Out - Hal Ashby's Lookin' To Get Out - The Extended Version On Dvd

Lookin' to Get Out - Hal Ashby's LOOKIN' TO GET OUT - The Extended Version on DVD

1982's Lookin' to Get Out is back in an entirely new version, thanks to the intervention of its star Jon Voight. The original release garnered "disappointing" reviews and did very little business, seriously damaging the career of Hal Ashby. The director of the cult hit Harold and Maude became a casualty of a film culture that abandoned 70s experimentation in favor of the Spielberg-Lucas brand of traditional escapism. Ex- editor Hal Ashby was fresh from the prestige successes Shampoo, Coming Home and Being There. If you count critical hits, he was one of the most successful of the 70s directors. His Lookin' to Get Out is a hyper comedy thriller about gambling and irresponsibility. Alex Kovac and Jerry Feldman (Jon Voight & Burt Young) are New York gamblers with a talent for turning success into disaster. Flush from a big win, Alex blows it all in a card game with some local hoods. The boys flee to Las Vegas in an unlikely scheme to make up their losses. The irrationally optimistic Alex takes things to the brink by accepting a complimentary booking into the MGM Grand's "Dr. Zhivago Suite" -- the check-in clerk mistakes Jerry for a close associate of hotel owner Bernie Gold (Richard Bradford). Alex digs up ex- master gambler Smitty (the hilarious Burt Remsen), and using money advanced by the hotel, stakes him to a wild game of blackjack. Meanwhile, Jon's other past catches up with him as well. Gold's present girlfriend Patti Warner (Ann-Margret) wants to see if Jon has reformed -- and to introduce him to the four year-old daughter he's never met. The behind-the-scenes battles on Lookin' to Get Out were being publicized long before its release. When Ashby moved on, Lorimar cut the film without his input, and the film as released represented little of the director's original intention. Made at a time when production costs were ballooning, Lookin' cost $17 million and didn't even clear the $1 million mark at the box office. After the debacle of Heaven's Gate, the film became another "proof" that Hollywood needed to reign in the power of film directors. Twenty-five years later, Ashby biographer Nick Dawson told Lookin' star and co-writer Jon Voight about a longer cut of the film donated to the UCLA Film Archive for safekeeping. This "Extended Version" is a full fifteen minutes longer. The extra footage adds more than character scenes and detail; it's an alternate editorial version all the way through. Jon Voight: "Cut for cut it's a different picture. Every scene has been played with." In the shorter 1982 version Jon Voight's Alex comes across as destructive and unlikable, a guy who always seems to be shouting and making a scene. The new in-between material gives Alex more of a human balance, and includes sentimental notes missing in the original cut. With the emphasis on character touches restored, the film seems less hectic and cartoonish. Lookin' to Get Out is still the randy adventures of a couple of ambitious lowlifes, but the new cut turns the film around by restoring its oddball pacing. The same manic climaxes are there, with the key difference that we now care what happens to the foolhardy heroes. Ashby's film is now a genuine Screwball comedy. Dreamer Alex Kovac believes he can find a way out of any crisis, even when gangsters have threatened to kill him. He plays every situation to the brink, luxuriating in a suite meant for an Arab prince while betting his life that the craggy old Smitty -- who has a serious heart condition -- can prevail at the blackjack table. Jerry Feldman is Alex's slower-thinking sidekick, in over his head and wondering if he should pull Alex back before both of their necks are chopped off. Jerry makes a pass at Patti, not realizing that she's just peeking in to see if Alex has matured any in the past few years. When Patti sees that the opposite is the case, she does what she can to protect her ex- boyfriend from the wrath of the Las Vegas establishment. Things come to a head during the crucial blackjack game, when the New York thugs and the hotel owner converge simultaneously on our foolhardy heroes. Had this version of Lookin' to Get Out been released in 1982, it could have been a special event in Hal Ashby's filmography. In this looser cut, it's a more commercial proposition than Robert Altman's California Split, another story of compulsive gamblers. Warners' new release will hopefully redeem Lookin's filmic reputation. The Extended Cut restores the very first performance of Angelina Jolie. The four year-old Jolie is very recognizably herself in a brief but cute reunion scene with Alex Kovac. It's too bad that Warners missed a Father's Day release date for the new DVD, as the father-daughter sparks between Jolie and Voight give Lookin' to Get Out an added kick of nostalgia. Warner Home Entertainment's Extended Cut DVD release of Lookin' to Get Out is a transfer of Hal Ashby's one-of-a-kind archived print, and therefore is a few clicks below transfer perfection. Only by looking at the original trailer do we see that Haskell Wexler's original cinematography was slightly richer and sharper. The new version has nothing to hide. Laurent Bouzereau's new featurette The Cast Looks Back investigates the Lookin' experience through interviews with Jon Voight, Burt Young and Ann-Margret. Co-screenwriter Al Schwartz recalls dreaming up the story idea on a Las Vegas bender with actor Joe Turkel. All share their memories of Ashby, and praise the work of cinematographer Wexler and the legendary production designer Robert Boyle. The featurette ends with some funny on-camera exchanges between Voight and Ann-Margret, who jokingly corrects Voight on her name. For more information about Lookin' to Get Out, visit Warner Video. To order Lookin' to Get Out, go to TCM Shopping. by Glenn Erickson

Quotes

Trivia

Miscellaneous Notes

Released in United States Fall October 1, 1982

Released in United States Fall October 1, 1982