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8.1/10
37,342
138 user 59 critic

Paper Moon (1973)

PG | | Comedy, Drama | 9 May 1973 (USA)
During the Great Depression, a con man finds himself saddled with a young girl who may or may not be his daughter, and the two forge an unlikely partnership.

Director:

Peter Bogdanovich

Writers:

Joe David Brown (novel), Alvin Sargent (screenplay)
Reviews
Popularity
4,272 ( 27)

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Top Rated Movies #246 | Won 1 Oscar. Another 7 wins & 10 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Ryan O'Neal ... Moses Pray
Tatum O'Neal ... Addie Loggins
Madeline Kahn ... Trixie Delight
John Hillerman ... Deputy Hardin / Jess Hardin
P.J. Johnson ... Imogene
Jessie Lee Fulton ... Miss Ollie
James N. Harrell James N. Harrell ... The Minister (as Jim Harrell)
Lila Waters Lila Waters ... The Minister's Wife
Noble Willingham ... Mr. Robertson
Bob Young Bob Young ... Gas Station Attendant
Jack Saunders Jack Saunders ... Station Master
Jody Wilbur Jody Wilbur ... Cafe Waitress
Liz Ross Liz Ross ... The Widow Morgan - Pearl
Yvonne Harrison Yvonne Harrison ... The Widow Bates - Marie
Ed Reed ... The Lawman - Bates' Home
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Storyline

Adapted from the novel, "Addie Pray" (1971) by Joe David Brown, PAPER MOON is the story of Moses Pray and Addie Loggins. With scenery reminiscent of "The Grapes of Wrath," the film is set in the depression-era Midwestern region of the United States. As the movie opens, we see a small group of mourners clustered at a graveside. Among the mourners is Addie, the dead woman's small daughter. Moses Pray -- ostensibly of the "Kansas Bible Company" -- approaches the group, as the service concludes, and two of the elderly women remark that the child bears some resemblance to him and asks if he might be related. "If ever a child needed kin, it's now," one lady says. With no knowledge of who her father is, Addie's only haven is her Aunt's home in St. Joseph, Missouri. Having identified himself as a "traveling man spreading the Lord's gospel in these troubled times," "Mose" is prevailed upon to deliver the helpless child to her Aunt since he's going that way, anyway. Addie, wise beyond her years... Written by MARK FLEETWOOD <mfleetwo@mail.coin.missouri.edu>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

These aren't everyday people and this is no ordinary movie. See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Drama

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

9 May 1973 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Luna de papel See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$2,500,000 (estimated)

Gross USA:

$30,933,743
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Production Designer Polly Platt looked for a seersucker suit in Paramount's costumes for Ryan O'Neal. After she found the suit that would be the one he would wear, inside it she found a piece of tape that indicated that George Raft wore it in a movie, although it did not indicate which one. See more »

Goofs

After Mose and Addie leave the hotel upon finding Trixie "cheating" with the desk clerk, they are driving in the rain. There is wind blowing Addie's hair and ribbon from the back, although the windows are clearly closed, as it is raining very heavily. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
The Minister: Judge me, oh Lord, for I have lost in mine integrity. I have trusted also in the Lord, therefore I shall not slide. Examine me, oh Lord, and prove me. Try my reins and my heart, for Thy loving kindness is before mine eyes, and I have walked in Thy truth.
See more »

Crazy Credits

Special thanks to the people in and around Hays, Kansas and St. Joseph, Missouri See more »

Connections

Featured in WatchMojo: Top 10 Father and Daughter Movies (2014) See more »

Soundtracks

One Hour with You
(1932) (uncredited)
Music by Richard A. Whiting
Lyrics by Leo Robin
Performed by Jimmie Grier and His Orchestra
Vocal by Donald Novis
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
A Father/Daughter Con Team Played by a Father and Daughter
8 June 2007 | by evanston_dadSee all my reviews

A charmer.

Ryan O'Neal stars with his real-life daughter Tatum in this story about a father and daughter con team scraping together an existence in Depression-era America. Along the way, the dad picks up a brassy floozy, played by the expert comedienne Madeline Kahn, which doesn't go down well with the precocious kid.

The entire success of "Paper Moon" relied upon the performance of the child actor, and Peter Bogdanovich did well to cast Tatum, as she plays the role without any of the self-conscious cutesiness that makes other child actors unbearable. Ryan was never more relaxed or likable in a role, maybe because he was working with his daughter. And Kahn of course is a delight, though one wishes she had a bigger role.

As with "The Last Picture Show," Bogdanovich shoots in nostalgic black and white, but this project is much more light-hearted than the other.

Grade: A-


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