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Old Movies You Should Have Seen by Now: Harry & Tonto

Harry & Tonto


Director: Paul Mazursky

Principal Actors: Art Carney, Tonto the Cat

Gut-level Take

Everything either changes or dies. Observe it, accept it, and keep moving on.

Basic Plot

Evicted from his lifelong apartment in New York, old-guy Harry and his old cat Tonto take a road trip west meeting sweet, eccentric people along the way.


  • The death of your generation and its culture
  • Meeting strangers is transformative
  • Individualism vs community
  • Animals as family
  • Is the world really getting more dangerous, or do we just perceive it to be more so?

Unexpected Awesomeness

  • 1970s economy referred to as the “worst since the Great Depression” — gave me hope that the dire economy now will eventually get better
  • Melanie Mayron (eccentric photographer in Thirtysomething) as a kooky young runaway with crazy round glasses
  • A road movie in which nothing bad happens to the travelers
  • Larry Hagman as a wanna-be West Coast playboy with a penchant for tightly tied neck scarves