Dog Day Afternoon Review

After watching the film Dog Day Afternoon, I am left with a feeling of extreme sadness.  The film centered on a man named Sonny who went to great lengths for a man that he loved.  The movie takes place on a summer afternoon in Brooklyn, New York.  Sonny, his friend Sal and a third young man enter a bank with the intentions of robbing it.  The third young man decides very early on that he does not want to participate in the robbery and leaves.  Sonny and Sal however choose to stay and get what they came for.  Sonny and Sal are able to take all the money that is in the bank at the time although this amount is not much.  Sonny decides that he is going to take all the traveler’s check and empty the registers, however if he does this he needs to burn the receipt book.  This is the beginning of the end for Sonny and Sal.

When Sonny decides to burn the book he carelessly tosses it into a trash can.  This creates smoke that can be seen from buildings outside.  When the smoke is seen the police are contacted and before Sonny can even realize it he bank building is surrounded by the NYPD.  He then enters into a long and drawn out negation with the NYPD.  The Detective soon loses Sonny’s trust and is replaced by an FBI agent.  The FBI agent is able to get a limo and a jet like Sonny had asked for hours before.  Sonny’s situation is finally beginning to look like it might have a positive ending.  He is able to get into the limo with hostages just like he had planned.  The limo will drive them all to John F. Kennedy international airport and Sonny thinks he will be able to leave the country with Sal.  When they arrive at the airport the driver, who was also an FBI agent shoots Sal in the head and Sonny is arrested on the spot.

I do not believe that Sonny would have committed such a crime if it was not for the man he loved, Leon.  Leon was a transgendered man.  He felt that if he were able to have an operation to change his gender from female to male he would be able to live his life the way he wanted.  However the procedure was an expensive one.  This is what force Sonny and Sal to commit this crime, and ultimately Sal’s death and Sonny’s incarceration.

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One Response to Dog Day Afternoon Review

  1. Juan Monroy says:

    This is an interesting summary of the film’s main plot and character’s motivations, but it doesn’t relate to how the film was part of the New Hollywood movement.

    Also, what sources did you use?

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