"Movies... For Free!", showcasing classic movies that have fallen out of copyright and are available freely from the public domain (with streaming video!)...
Born to Win, 1971.
Directed by Ivan Passer.
Starring George Segal, Paula Prentiss, Karen Black and Robert De Niro.
Czech director Ivan Passer follows up his highly rated debut Intimate Lightning (1965) with his first American feature, the 1971 black comedy Born to Win. George Segal (Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?) stars as hairdresser-turned-junkie JJ, estranged from his wife (Prentiss) and feeding his habit by dealing drugs and engaging in petty crime around New York City. JJ soon begins a relationship with the free-spirited Parm (Black), but his problems continue to spiral out of control when he is arrested delivering drugs on behalf of local dealer Vivian (Hector Elizondo) and forced to turn against his employer in a sting operation.
Based upon David Scott Milton's play Scraping Bottom (with a title change that Pauline Kael described as perhaps the most extreme in American cinema), Born to Win is an under-rated example of low-budget independent filmmaking and is also notable for featuring a young Robert De Niro, who makes an appearance as an undercover detective working with JJ to bring Vivian down.
Embed courtesy of Internet Archive.
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