Best Movies by Farr
Charley Varrick Poster
Released Runtime Category
1973 111 Mystery/Thrillers
Director Language
Don Siegel English
Walter Matthau, Joe Don Baker, Felicia Farr, Andy Robinson

Charley Varrick

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What's it About

After a small-town bank heist leaves three people dead, including his girlfriend Nadine, small-time crook Charley Varrick (Matthau) hides out with his stick-up partner, Harman (Robinson), to count the loot. Instead of netting the expected two grand, the thieves find themselves holding $750,000 in surely laundered money. Now Varrick's got to outfox both the cops and a spooky hired killer (Baker) sent by the people he burned: the mafia.

Why we love it

Shortly after veteran action director Siegel scored a big hit with "Dirty Harry," he made this unjustly forgotten crime thriller starring the gawky, beak-nosed Matthau, who was known mostly for comedic roles. Playing wildly against type, Matthau is aces playing a sarcastic airman turned bank robber who uses his wits in lieu of a gun. Baker is wickedly good, too, as Molly, his pipe-smoking would-be executioner. Rejecting the romantic view of crime made famous by "Bonnie and Clyde," this film is taut and gruff, and Siegel directs with no-nonsense conviction.

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BEST MOVIES BY FARR is your personal guide to great movies to rent, stream, or buy; to watch at home or on-the-go. Led by film advocate John Farr, the Best Movies by Farr team works as a "quality filter" for the discerning moviegoer. Every day, we bring you the best of the best, the fantastic familiar films and hidden gems, to answer that age-old question: "What should we watch tonight?"