Looking for a movie to entertain our diverse group, I found The Hustler on Netflix this afternoon, and sure enough it had something to hold the attention of each of us: Heidi's dad liked the pool playing; her mom liked Paul Newman; her brother was interested in watching a classic for the first time, and I got a kick out of seeing Jackie Gleason as Minnesota Fats. When it was all over, I flipped immediately to its sequel. I saw The Color of Money back in '86 when it came out, and I haven't seen it since. Back then, I considered it a Tom Cruise movie, of course, and Paul Newman seemed like a minor character who abandons Vincent in a temper tantrum.
Today, though, I was mostly interested in seeing how Fast Eddie fared in the 25 years following his hollow victory in Ames, and when it came down to that final showdown in Atlantic City, I was actually rooting for the old man. Sure, Tom Cruise and I are the same age, born just a few days apart, but both of us are much closer to Eddie Felson's age now. Funny how that happens.