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The Hot Rock (1972)

aka The Hot Rock

Directed By: 
Details: 101 mins · English · PG (USA)


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After Dortmunder (Redford) is released from his latest stint in prison, he is approached by his brother-in-law, Andy Kelp (Segal), about another job. Dr. Amusa (Gunn) seeks a valuable gem in the Brooklyn Museum that is of great significance to his people in his country in Africa, stolen during colonial times and then re-stolen by various African nations on multiple occasions since.

Dortmunder and Kelp are joined by driver Stan Murch (Leibman) and explosives expert Allan Greenberg (Sand) and concoct an elaborate plan for stealing the gem. Although the scheme (and each subsequent one) basically works, something always seems to go awry, and the quartet has to steal the diamond again and again.

First off, the diamond is swallowed by Greenberg when he alone gets caught by the police during the initial heist. After Greenberg tells his partners where he hid the rock in the police precinct jail (after bodily disposing it), the quartet attempt a heist at the precinct. But the rock is nowhere to be found.

It is later discovered that Greenberg's father Abe (Mostel), a dishonest lawyer who bailed his son out of jail, was the only other person who knew where it was. It isn't until Murch, disguised as the muscle man "Chicken," threatens Abe with being thrown down an elevator shaft that Abe gives up the location of the diamond.

After a series of bluffs, Abe Greenberg reveals that he put the diamond in his safe deposit box and has made his own deal to sell the gem to Dr. Amusa, which will leave Dortmunder's gang with nothing. Dr. Amusa fires Dortmunder for his incompetence.

However, with the help of a hypnotist by the name of Miasmo, Dortmunder invokes the predetermined hypnotic trigger word "Afghanistan-Bananastan" to a bank employee. He is then able to gain access to Abe's safe deposit box and retrieve the gem just after the bank opens in the morning.

As Dortmunder exits the bank, Abe and Dr. Amusa arrive at the bank but do not see him in the crowd. Dortmunder climbs into a car where the others are waiting and a rousing cheer erupts as they drive off.

Release Dates:

DVD : 2003-05-20