Cruising is a 1980 American crime film written and directed by William Friedkin, and starring Al Pacino, Paul Sorvino, and Karen Allen. It is loosely based on the novel of the same name, by The New York Times reporter Gerald Walker, about a serial killer targeting gay men, in particular those associated with the leather scene in the late 1970s. The title is a play on words with a dual meaning, because "cruising" can describe police officers on patrol and also cruising for sex.
Poorly reviewed by critics upon release, Cruising was a modest financial success. The shooting and promotion were dogged by gay rights protesters, who believed that the film stigmatized them. The film is also notable for its open-ended finale, further complicated by the director's incoherent changes in the rough cut and synopsis, as well as due to other production issues.