Times Square Movie Review

Times Square

A poor girl becomes famous, a rich girl becomes courageous and both become friends


Robin Johnson, Trini Alvarado, Tim Curry, Peter Coffield

Herbert Burghof, Anna Maria Horsford, David Margulies, Michael Margotta, J.C. Quinn, Miguel Pinero, Ronald 'Smokey' Stevens, Billy Mernit, Paul Bass, Artie Weinstein, Tim Choate, Elizabeth Peņa, Kathy Lojac, Susan Merson, George Morfogen, Charles Blackwell Update Cast

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The film was inspired by a diary director Allan Moyle found in a second hand couch that he bought. The diary was from a young mentally disturbed woman that featured words and drawings about her life on the streets.

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Pamela Pearl (Alvarado) is a rich girl with a dad who doesn't understand her and a need to be herself. Nicky Marotta (Johnson) is a street-smart girl with only guts and nerves driving her. The two meet in a mental hospital, and after making their escape, become "blood sisters". Bound together, they try to achieve their dreams, Nicky's of stardom and Pamela's of understanding. All they have are themselves being guided over the airwaves by smooth-talking DJ Johnny LaGuardia (Curry), who either cares about them or is manipulating them for the press.

While ostensibly a punk rock movie, "Times Square" is a movie for outcasts of all stripes. I can definitely relate to both Pamela and Nicky. Like Pamela, I have a lot going for me, but no one to understand me. My mom says she does and my doctors say they do, but they only hear what I say. I can't put my thoughts and feelings into words for them without offending anybody.

Like Nicky, I have a tendency to be brash, bold and opinionated. By watching this movie, I see Nicky saying all the foul-mouthed poison-pen thoughts I want to hurl at my bosses, members of my family, and programs that are designed to hold me down from living the life I want to live.

Sometimes, you have to take crazy steps in order to get ahead. In this movie, the duo do everything from stealing food to taking jobs in a strip club to keep alive and two steps ahead of the game. When the song said "If I can make it there, I'll make it anywhere", perhaps they weren't aware that they were perpetrating a big lie. This movie is almost like a documentary, showing how people have to hustle for everything in the city. I could never live in New York City...I'd be dead within a week.

Still, if I want to take a trip to the city, I'll use the movies. This movie is a great ride. It shows Times Square the way everybody remembers it...As a pit of sleaze and degradation. Disney, Planet Hollywood and everything else they've put there doesn't hide the truth about the city and its' inhabitants.

This movie demonstrates the truth about New York, and the truth is "Give it everything you got, but watch your step...You might not make it out alive".

Author: John Edward KilduffUpdate This Review


This movie is a great example of punk rock cinema. The music is great, and the performances better. Tim Curry has a great combo of sincerity and sleaze. Trini Alvarado expresses both forwardness and fear.

Finally, there's Robin Johnson. She's a total babe with a nice raspy voice. She looks a little like Kathleen Wilhoite actually. Johnson's intense performance runs the gamut of emotions from A to Z. She gave an Oscar-worthy performance. She should've at least gotten a nomination for Best Actress.

I wish that all outcasts could see this movie. It's a film just for them.

Great performances and soundtrack.
Based on what I've read, a lot was cut out from the movie.

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The Movie Data

Key Crew

Director: Allan Moyle
Writer: Jacob Brackman, Allan Moyle, Leanne Unger
Producers: Jacob Brackman, Kevin McCormick, John Nicolella, Bill Oakes, Robert Stigwood
Locations Manager:

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Release Date: 17 Oct 1980
MPAA Rating: R
Production: Butterfly Valley N.Y., EMI Films, Robert Stigwood Organization (RSO)
Genre: Dance / Music

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The Movie Trailer
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