Urban Cowboy

6.42 h 14 min1980X-RayPG
A Texas farmer comes to Houston to work in a refinery, and learns about life at the famous Gilley's, the largest honky-tonk in the world.
James Bridges
John TravoltaDebra WingerScott Glenn
English [CC]
Audio languages
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Supporting actors
Madolyn SmithBarry CorbinBrooke AldersonMickey GilleyCharlie DanielsBonnie Raitt
Irving AzoffRobert Evans
PG (Parental Guidance Suggested)
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4.8 out of 5 stars

7232 global ratings

  1. 87% of reviews have 5 stars
  2. 7% of reviews have 4 stars
  3. 3% of reviews have 3 stars
  4. 1% of reviews have 2 stars
  5. 2% of reviews have 1 stars
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WeedwackerReviewed in the United States on June 3, 2020
5.0 out of 5 stars
Urban Cowboy 40th Anniversary Edition Blu-ray
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This review is for the 40th Anniversary Edition Blu-ray released June 2, 2020.

This review is primarily for the PRODUCT and is intended to help anyone out who cannot decide whether they should purchase this edition of the movie. It is not my commentary on the film, which I don’t think most people need. That is what IMDB is for. ;-)

That being said:
My personal rating for the movie itself is 5/5.
My rating for the Blu-ray release is 5/5, but your value may vary, which is why I am reviewing this product. :) I will break it down by topic and you can skip to whatever parts you want to know about.

PICTURE QUALITY: This version is definitely a lot cleaner looking than the original DVD. The color looks to be about the same but everything is crisper and clearer. Now, whether this is vital to you, I don’t know. I have seen this movie countless (and I mean countless) times since I was a small child in the early 80’s. This is one of my top 10 favorite films. That being as it is, I have never taken issue with the somewhat grainy quality because it is the only version I have ever seen or known and have been watching for decades on TV, VHS and DVD. However, for people who have not seen this or who really enjoy a clean picture, the picture quality alone is worth the purchase. I enjoy the polished up look, too.

SUBTITLES: There are different options here than on the original DVD. Here we have English, English SDH, German and French. Note: German subtitles are not listed on the Blu-ray packaging but they are indeed there. The original DVD has English, Spanish and Brazilian subtitles.

SPECIAL FEATURES: this new Blu-ray edition has some special features that were already on the DVD and some new ones!

NEW: Good Times with Gilley: Looking Back at Urban Cowboy. This is a new 15-minute feature that is essentially Mickey Gilley reminiscing and talking about his career, Gilley’s Club and his memories from shooting Urban Cowboy. If you enjoy classic country music and like having a bit of a history lesson on that subject as well as a bit of talk about Gilley’s, then this is an interesting watch that was not on the original DVD release.

There are four deleted scenes included here which were not on the original DVD release.

Sissy’s folks: scene is about 3 minutes long and shows Sissy waiting at church with her parents for Bud to show up to meet them, Bud and Sissy boot shopping and then having a picnic and practicing some lasso moves. I think this scene packs a lot into its 3 minutes. We get to see Bud and Sissy dating a bit and it is a very sweet depiction. Additionally, we get a bit more of the “boys vs girls” and Bud’s pride-and-ego issues. While I think the movie does more than enough to illustrate Bud’s character and flaws without this scene, I do think the dating aspect would have added value to the film.

Wes and Steve: scene is about 1 minute long and is essentially the discussion Steve and Wes have about Wes moving into the trailer in the back behind Gilley’s. The only purpose for this scene is really to establish that Steve knows about Wes’s past and criminal status and that Wes is up front about that but also that he earned Steve’s trust only to turn on him in the end of the film. It is not a bad scene but it really makes Wes seem nice, which is odd because in every moment of his screen time in the rest of the film it is apparent that he is a menacing, dark, troubled person. This scene feels a bit out of place and I can see why it was cut. Any information established here is just as effectively established through dialogue in other scenes in the film.

Bud’s firing: scene is just over 1 and a half minutes long and consists of Bud and Uncle Bob discussing Bud being fired (temporarily) due to his broken arm and discussion about Bud’s pride and how he should, according to Uncle Bob, apologize and try to win Sissy back. This scene definitely does not add anything of value to the film, in my opinion, and actually would have detracted from an emotional scene that takes place later. Bud and Uncle Bob basically have this same conversation later in the film before Uncle Bob dies; there is no need to have it twice. The conversation before Uncle Bob’s deaths is much more impactful to the audience and meaningful and would not have been as such if that same conversation had already taken place in this earlier scene and had been left in the movie.

Bud’s new job: scene is just under 2 and a half minutes and shows Marshall visiting Bud at his new/temporary job at a drive-thru dairy/liquor store. Their discussion consists of boys vs girls on the mechanical bull talk, Marshall updating Bud on Sissy living in the trailer with Wes and her drinking too much and being at Gilley’s every single night. It also makes a point that Bud is avoiding being at Gilley’s because he gets into too much trouble there (a point also made in the previous deleted scene with Uncle Bob). This scene feels a bit out of place and again is unnecessary. As with the deleted Bud and Uncle Bob scene, all the information we get here is given to us more effectively in other scenes in the film. Keeping this would have just dragged the pace of the movie, which is over two hours as is. It was a wise decision to remove it.

OUTTAKES: The outtakes amount to about 4 minutes comprised of Debra Winger and John Travolta two-stepping and John Travolta solo dancing. This was already on the original DVD release, so nothing new here. But any day we can watch John Travolta from the 70’s or early 80’s dancing Is a good day.

REHEARSAL FOOTAGE: The rehearsal footage amounts to about 4 minutes comprised of Debra Winger practicing her “drunk sexy ride” on the mechanical bull, John Travolta practicing his riding on the mechanical bull and a simultaneously kind-of-awkward and kind-of-sexy practice session with both of them riding the bull together/at the same time. I am not sure but I would imagine this was something they considered doing in the film but realized it would be strange and would not fit in the story anywhere. This was already released on the original DVD.

The Blu-ray also comes with a digital copy of the film, redeemable through paramountmovies.com, which appears to be valid for two years

If you have never seen Urban Cowboy and are considering a purchase, this is definitely the version I would go with. If you are a die hard fan of the film, I recommend it to you as well. If you are a casual viewer and already own the DVD or have a digital copy and cannot decide whether purchasing another copy is worth your while, then I hope my review has helped you determine whether you should invest in this version.
47 people found this helpful
DCraigReviewed in the United States on May 25, 2019
5.0 out of 5 stars
LOVE URBAN COWBOY! Former Gilley Rat!
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As a native TEXAN and former Gilley Rat, this is a favorite movie of mine! Probably because so many of my friends, family are in the movie as extras and some had featured roles! The music is an EXTRA bonus because it brings back some of the best memories EVER! I met my husband at the famous Gilley's Club 12/31/1979 and we have been married now for almost forty years! SO.....we come close to being a lot like "Bud and Sissy"!!! LOL
30 people found this helpful
Jeanette MatteReviewed in the United States on January 15, 2018
1.0 out of 5 stars
Sound quality is horrible!
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Thus is one of those films from when i was a kid that I just wanted in my movie library. I thought the digital version would be convenient as I have several in my Amazon account. However, this digital version has such horrible sound quality that I cannot hear any scene with only talking even when i move the volume up to 100! The scenes with talking and music are fine and any scenes with just music are extremely loud.

I need to constantly adjust the volume on my speakers throughout the entire film.

As a reference to my electronic experience I want to note that I am a film editor and work in the film industry so I do have nice playback equipment and I also know how to use it.

I recommend buying the DVD version or Blu-ray if it's available but not this Amazon digital version.
25 people found this helpful
The BruceReviewed in the United States on August 24, 2019
3.0 out of 5 stars
DVD Average image quality--digital sound good
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This film was released on DVD in 2002 and reissued in 2017. I had read reviews about poor image quality and ordered the 2017 Paramount release from Amazon hoping it had been corrected. Its easy to get spoiled with 4K and blu-ray but I found the image slightly dark, detail is mildly fuzzy as though it came from a 2nd generation master. It reminds me of an early DVD release from the 1990s. On the upside the sound quality is excellent on my 5.1 system with separation, clarity and punch. Considering the movie's immense social impact on the 'urban cowboy' music scene of the 1980s-2000s its a real mystery why this had not been released on blu-ray. One clue is the number of artists on the soundtrack, several who had monster hits from the movie: Jimmy Buffet, Joe Walsh, Dan Fogelberg, Bob Seger, Johnny Lee, Anne Murray, Eagles, Bonnie Raitt, Kenny Rogers, Charlie Daniels, Boz Scaggs, Linda Ronstadt, and JD Souther. I suspect there are legal wranglings over music royalties and the use of Gilly's name.

JUNE 2020 NOTE: this film has FINALLY been released on blu ray. Its much clearer but shimmery and slightly and grainy in places. But is superior to the DVD and for a 1980 film is par for the format. The attached screen screen shot is of the DVD on a Sony X65900E using Emby Theater player.
9 people found this helpful
Khristine JacksonReviewed in the United States on September 16, 2020
5.0 out of 5 stars
Texas.. Travolta ...and Cowboy boot's..!
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No matter how times I see this movie.. It never get's old to me.. The location... the script,cast and yes the MUSIC keep's me coming back for more. John Travolta first of all in his youth and prime was a very attractive man.. It's those EYES ..similar to what the late Paul Newman had.. Beautiful eyes.. Second ..he can dance his behind off..! He has the Body for a dancer as I should know.. Seeing that I was once a ..dancer..! I think we all relate to his character and the relationship-marriage he had with Debra Winger.. Debra Winger how do I describe this Jewish princess..? She is a wonderful actress ...and she gives us "Cissy" better than any other actress could.. Gilley's was a place to be at nearly 40 and something years ago. Also Barry Corbin playing "Bud's" uncle is always something we all wish we had in an uncle.. Let's not forget the bad boy ..played by Scott Glenn ..what chops he has.. I especially like how he munched on the worm in the trailor scene with Debra Winger ....while swallowing several sip's of Tequila.. The rich girl played by actress Madolyn Smith.. who has since ..retired from acting to be a wife,mom.. I must be honest with you.. This movie has some of the best song's in it.. Charlie Daniels Band..Kenny Rogers,,Bonnie Raitt,Johnny Lee and Boz Scaggs... I think as a woman .. We all long for a man that will love us and break up ..then rush back into our arm's..like Bud.. ? The late actor Patrick Swayze's ..mother (Patsy Swayze) was the lead choreographer ... Ms.Patsy was an out standing dancer teacher ..here in Southern California.. Over all ... this is one of Mr.Travolta's ..Top 5 films of mine..
3 people found this helpful
Minnesota FATSReviewed in the United States on September 3, 2020
5.0 out of 5 stars
Was GREAT to see Charlie Daniels in his younger days R.I.P. Charlie
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I was 30 when this movie came out, I liked then & still after 40 years still do! I was a country boy, still am! I Like Mickey Gilley very much I bought a lot of his music back in the day. I see John Travolta now, he probably wishes he still looked that good 😉 Don't we all👴😔

I had the opportunity to see Charley Daniels Last September on my Birthday in Concert my Son took me to in this little hometown of mine here in Central PA. Got to go backstage & meet him shake his hand and have a picture taken with him & get a few Autographs including an old LP Album he said he hadn't seen in a long time, I am thankful I had the opportunity to meet Charlie before he passed away R.I.P Charlie Daniels😔🙏

Now if I could get to meet Mickey Gilley I would enjoy that, it's on my bucket list😉
5 people found this helpful
AderynReviewed in the United States on November 20, 2017
5.0 out of 5 stars
Oldie but goodie
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I recently rewatched this and remembered those years when everyone thought Houston was the land of opportunity and Gilly's was the club everyone wanted to visit. I was a little surprised at how well the movie held up--thought it might have suffered under the weight of those long-gone dreams, but it really didn't. And any movie that gets John Travolta dancing...yeah, okay, I'll watch it just for that.
18 people found this helpful
BellworxReviewed in the United States on November 25, 2018
5.0 out of 5 stars
A must watch
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My 5 must watch movies when they pop up on tv every so often and in no particular order

Urban cowboy
La Bamba
Road House
Point Break

And who would have EVER thought gary busey was offered the role as Bud in urban cowboy!
"I luv ya sissy!"
11 people found this helpful
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