It takes a lot to be the only X-rated film to ever win Best Picture. It takes being one of the greatest movies of all time, and Midnight Cowboy fits that perfectly.
It seems right that we would end Gritty New York City week with this film, which deals with the highest and lowest social aspects of NYC, and the places where they meet in search of pleasure. It's also a movie about an outsider's experience in New York, an experience that millions of people who have immigrated to New York from across the country and the globe have had.
At the center of Midnight Cowboy is a pair of perfornances so beautiful that just watching Rizzo and Joe Buck interact in this trailer made me emotional. Jon Voight is such a sweet, hopeful doofus and Dustin Hoffman is incredible, a greasy streak of a man whose soul is broken but maybe healed just a little bit by being friends with this big palooka.
Midnight Cowboy's New York City is the New York City I want to live in, just before it went off the deep end but still right on the edge. It's a beautiful winter New York, crisp and tough and lovely. Just like the film.