Cruising is a 1980 American crime thriller film written and directed by William Friedkin and starring Al Pacino, Paul Sorvino, and Karen Allen. It is loosely based on the novel of the same name by New York Times reporter Gerald Walker about a serial killer targeting gay men, particularly those men associated with the leather scene in the late 1970s. The title is a double entendre, because "cruising" can describe both police officers on patrol and men who are cruising for sex.

Quick facts: Cruising, Directed by, Screenplay by, Based o...
Theatrical release poster
Directed byWilliam Friedkin
Screenplay byWilliam Friedkin
Based onCruising
by Gerald Walker
Produced byJerry Weintraub
CinematographyJames Contner
Edited byBud Smith
Music byJack Nitzsche
Distributed byUnited Artists
Release dates
  • February 8, 1980 (1980-02-08) (United States)
  • August 25, 1980 (1980-08-25) (West Germany)
Running time
102 minutes[1]
  • United States[1]
  • West Germany[1]
Budget$11 million
Box office$19.8 million

Poorly received by critics upon release, Cruising performed moderately at the box office. The shooting and promotion were dogged by gay rights protesters, who believed that the film stigmatized them. The film is also notable for its open-ended finale, which was criticized by Robin Wood and Bill Krohn as further complicating what they felt were the director's incoherent changes to the rough cut and synopsis, as well as other production issues.[2]

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